The “Godfather of Cosmic Americana” Michael Chapman is back!

Leaving you this weekend dear dear readers with news that the Leeds born so-called “Godfather of Cosmic Americana” is back with a new album ‘True North’ recorded with close ally Steve Gunn and which features pals Bridget St John and BJ Cole. Chapman has been championed by (or collaborated with) the likes of Hiss Golden Messenger, Ryley Walker, Jack Rose, Bill Callahan, Thurston Moore and Alex Turner. Continue reading “The “Godfather of Cosmic Americana” Michael Chapman is back!”

Rosali “Trouble Anyway” (Scissor Tail Records/Spinster Sounds, 2018)

Philadelphia’s Rosali builds upon the ethereality of her debut – 2016’s acclaimed ‘Out of Love’ – on the ghostly ‘Trouble Anyway,’ recorded and mixed by Jeff Zeigler, who has worked with The War on Drugs and Kurt Vile among others.  On her sophomore outing, Rosali enlists a group of musicians that share her love of mood and texture, including Charlie Hall (War on Drugs), Paul Sukeena (Angel Olsen), Mary Lattimore, Mike Polizze (Purling Hiss), Nathan Bowles (Steve Gunn, Black Twig Pickers), Gretchen Lohse (Carol Cleveland Sings), and Dan Provenzano (Purling Hiss, Writhing Squares). Continue reading “Rosali “Trouble Anyway” (Scissor Tail Records/Spinster Sounds, 2018)”

Rhett Miller talks to RS about depression and sobriety

Rolling Stone Country have posted an interview online with the Old 97’s frontman Rhett Miller which is a really interesting read. He covers a variety of topics including his struggles with mental health and the work he’s been engaged in with suicide prevention groups, telling them: “It’s just an inherently tricky negotiation to wake up every morning and figure out the motivation to go on. Some people are able to overcome that more easily, and some people are never able to overcome that.” You can read the whole piece over at RS here, or listen to a track from the new record below. Continue reading “Rhett Miller talks to RS about depression and sobriety”

John J Presley announces album “As The Night Draws In”

After various singles and EPs, dark tinged swamp rocking John J Presley – recently seen supporting Juanita Stein – at last announces his debut album ‘As the Night Draws In‘ which will be released on January 25th.  It features the dark and wild toned guitar excursions he’s known for – reminiscent in places of bands like Comets on Fire, but with his own distinctive twists.  ‘As the Night Draws In‘  has been a long time coming, speaking of the album Presley has said it “is a collection of workings from the last ten years. I wanted the body of work to show all sides of the music I make – not all riffs but some moments of clarity and tenderness too. It’s a reflection of frustrations and anxieties but also seeing a glimmer of light. A light to hold on to most certainly. It’s the deepest and broadest body of work I’ve done to date”. Continue reading “John J Presley announces album “As The Night Draws In””

Austin Lucas “Immortal Americans” (Cornelius Chapel Records, 2018)

‘Immortal Americans’, the seventh studio album by Indiana native Austin Lucas, arrives on the back of several challenges and changes faced in his personal life. Having moved back to his hometown of Bloomington after a twenty-year absence, Lucas broke free from his record label, and also got sober. During this period, his partner discovered she had cancer, leading to an extended period in which he was the primary career for her. His songwriting, however, did not cease. The writing sessions on his acoustic guitar while his suffering lover was asleep in the next room has led to the more intimate feel of this calmed-down punk’s new record. Continue reading “Austin Lucas “Immortal Americans” (Cornelius Chapel Records, 2018)”

Pick of the Political Pops: Willie Nelson “The Bob Song”

This week we were visited in The Bunker here at Americana-UK Towers by our friend Bob. Bob likes to remind us that B O B stands for ‘bored of Brexit’, a fact which he chuckled about continuously whilst he raided our bar for strong liquor. Now we’re not sure if Bob is a ‘gammon’ or a ‘snowflake’ – we just consider him a bigoted twat – but whatever he is the most important political situation probably in our lifetimes is hardly something to be bored about. In fact we are so interested in it that we hardly sleep at night, hanging on every twist, turn and shenanigan of the Brexit process. It’s not like we are either desperate to leave or desperate to remain. We’re just increasingly desperate. We’re not sure what is going to happen and the politicians aren’t helping us in any regard since they don’t know either. No one does. What a horrible mess.

The Burning Hell “Baby” (BB*Island, 2018)

Frank Zappa asked the question in 1986, “Does Humour Belong In Music?” I don’t know if that was a rhetorical question or not, but to head uncertainty off at the pass, the answer is yes. Flight of the Conchords and the national treasure (TM John Peel) that is Half Man Half Biscuit, are just two that justify an affirmative answer to that question. That said, Weird Al Jankovic and Tenacious D also make ‘humorous’ music but, to compare such acts to The Burning Hell, is to compare Cannon & Ball to Stewart Lee, so, like music of any genre, there’s some good and there’s some not so good. Continue reading “The Burning Hell “Baby” (BB*Island, 2018)”

Big Jim Brown “Pretty Girl” – Listen

Is it the shining clear guitar, or the rich baritone singing, that make this such an unashamedly lovely song ?  Maybe it’s the words – or all three, because that’s actually all there is on this new song from Big Jim Brown’s latest album ‘Devil on the Other Shoulder‘, which will be released on December 7, 2018.  And it finds the leader of the Speed Kings in a reflective mood on the richness of a lifetime of love and the brevity of forever “always happy seldom blue, I get to spend my life with you/…/ a silent kiss a single smile, forever’s just a little while“.  Ain’t that the truth.

Sarah MacDougall “All The Hours I Have Left To Tell You Anything” (Label In Between, 2018)

A Canadian of Swedish heritage, Sarah MacDougall is often summed up as capturing  a sense of the icy wastes of both countries in her music. She’s certainly been garlanded for her work, nominated for several awards in both countries and is one of those artists who have seen their songs included in popular television series, in this case, The Vampire Diaries. ‘All The Hours I Have Left To Tell You Anything’ is her fourth album but unfortunately, it continues in the tradition of its predecessor, ‘Grand Canyon‘, which saw MacDougall’s songs almost swamped by overblown arrangements in comparison to its excellent forerunner, ‘The Greatest One Alive’. Continue reading “Sarah MacDougall “All The Hours I Have Left To Tell You Anything” (Label In Between, 2018)”