Juanita Stein announces UK dates

Juanita Stein has announced a full UK tour for this November / December. The Howling Bells frontwoman turned solo artist, who has just released her new album ‘Until The Lights Fade’ via Nude Records, follows a summer of festivals including Latitude and Green Man, with a busy touring schedule from now into December. We reviewed the record only last month dear readers. Continue reading “Juanita Stein announces UK dates”

Hearts Of Oak “Moves” (Deer Lodge, 2018)

When asked what the highlight of this record was, the band replied “It’s OK to take drugs and play music”. That might have been a thing a few decades ago, but the modern Americana listener surely prefers a bit more focus and less self-indulgence? There is a psychedelic feel throughout this backwoods atmosphere, but it doesn’t seduce enough to tempt joining their indulgences. They claim Spacemen 3 as an influence, but ‘Taking Drugs to Make Music to Take Drugs to’ was 30 years ago now, and a much more coherent listen. Continue reading “Hearts Of Oak “Moves” (Deer Lodge, 2018)”

Ana Egge and Ben Kunder, The Green Note, Camden, 25th October 2018

Ana Egge may be a name known to relatively few people, but she’s now released no fewer than ten albums since her debut back in 1997. During that period she’s also managed to collaborate with the Stray Birds (Pensylvania’s finest acoustic roots trio) and Danish folk rockers, The Sentimentals, as well as recording with the likes of Steve Earle and Ron Sexsmith.  Over on these shores for the first time in five years to help promote her latest release ‘White Tiger’ (which was given 8/10 when AUK reviewed it here) Egge nevertheless seems to fit effortlessly into the folksy, warm environment of the Green Note. Continue reading “Ana Egge and Ben Kunder, The Green Note, Camden, 25th October 2018”

BD Harrington “Then All Was Still” (Independent, 2018)

‘Then All Was Still’ is the new EP from BD Harrington, who was raised and lives in Canada. This release takes a different spin from his previous outing ‘The Diver’s Curse,’ with a stripped back acoustic sound, leaving the record going back to basics. The four tracks, ‘Underside of Love,’ ‘Cold Starlight,’ ‘Out of Reach’ and ‘Rue St. Dominique’ all have a melancholic feel to them in both the rhythm and the lyrics.  Harrington’s voice add to this feeling, while unfortunately the backing music – instead of complementing his vocals – appears somewhat intrusive and distracting. Continue reading “BD Harrington “Then All Was Still” (Independent, 2018)”

Steve Gunn “New Moon” – Listen

Photo Credit : Clay Benskin

Sometimes good things come out of bad situations, Steve Gunn had taken a pretty big blow after the release of his last album ‘Eyes On The Lines‘, when his father died from cancer.  Steve and his father had got very close during the treatment, talking openly and deeply in a way that maybe they hadn’t before,  so this was a heavy knock that took some getting over.  Two years later and there’s a new album ;The Unseen In Between, to be released on January 18th which draws on some of these emotions, and which Steve was helped in putting together by Tony Garnier, Bob Dylan’s musical director and longest standing bandmate. Continue reading “Steve Gunn “New Moon” – Listen”

Video: No Coward Soul “If Only For Tonight”

From their debut album The Almanac, out now, this is a great song from what is a London band (named after the Emily Bronte poem presumably, which may be an Americana first), although fronted by Alaskan Brad Schmauss.  Regardless, it’s a great classically styled country song.  The band are playing at the Green Note on 4 December.  Not sure how they’ll all fit on the stage but it should be a great night.

John Oates and The Good Road Band “Arkansas” (PR Records, 2018)

As Hall and Oates wind down from their latest supersize tour of America’s arenas, John Oates has indulged in a novel form of relaxation – he’s formed a band and gone back into the studio! Actually, unable to fully resist the lavish excess that accompanies the day job,  it’s more of a blues supergroup. Guthrie Trapp (electric guitar), Sam Bush (mandolin), Russ Pahl (pedal steel), Max Smith (cello), Steve Mackey (bass) and Josh Day (drums) completing the all-star cast in Oates’ tribute to one of his great influences – Mississippi John Hurt. Continue reading “John Oates and The Good Road Band “Arkansas” (PR Records, 2018)”

LeBarons “Long Highway” – Listen

Few people are better positioned to write about long highways than a Canadian band, such as LeBarons. ‘Long Highways’ is the lead single from their upcoming album ‘Summer of Death‘ (due 2nd November), and if that title  conjours up images of Hard Metal, then worry not.  The LeBarons are a band making pure Americana, as this track which paints pictures of escape along the road heading that’s away from the problems rapidly disappearing in the rear-view mirror.  But escape to what ?

Kazyak “Reflection” (Independent, 2018)

Kazyak songwriter/guitarist Peter Frey describes their newest release, “Reflection” as “an attempt to create surreal, vivid, Dali-esque images with our sound — it’s a collection of outtakes, demos, and b-sides consistent with our history of not-trying-to-be-mainstream alternative rock”. It’s the second part of that sentence that’s at the core of the problem with this recording – “a collection of outtakes, demos and b-sides” and, unfortunately, it sounds like it! Continue reading “Kazyak “Reflection” (Independent, 2018)”