Justin Townes Earle announces new record, due May – Listen

We leave you this weekend dearest of readers with news that Justin Townes Earle has announced news of a new album – due out May 25th on the New West label, ‘The Saint of Lost Causes’ sees Earle reunite with his erstwhile producer Adam Bednarik in Nashville following his sojourn to Omaha for 2017’s ‘Kids in the Street’ record which he recorded with Bright Eyes’ Mike Mogis (which coincidentally used to be the name of my rabbit – Bright Eyes that is, not Mike Mogis).  Continue reading “Justin Townes Earle announces new record, due May – Listen”

Chatham County Line “Sharing the Covers” (Yep Roc, 2019)

‘Sharing the Covers’ is Chatham County Line’s eighth album, which means fans of this Raleigh-based fourpiece know by now they’ll likely be in for a faultlessly produced and smoothly performed collection of bluegrass music  – and they won’t be disappointed. And given this band’s proven ability to create an entire song’s lyrics  ‘Ringing in My Ears’  out of lines borrowed from Paul Simon, George Harrison, Willie Nelson et al, as well as their having versioned ‘I Shall Be Released’  way back on their second LP, a CCL covers album isn’t such a surprise in itself. Continue reading “Chatham County Line “Sharing the Covers” (Yep Roc, 2019)”

Teenage Fanclub return with new line-up, video – Watch

Teenage Fanclub are back after the departure of their founding bassist-singer Gerard Lovetap and there’s a bit of a new vibe to their first song ‘Everything is Falling Apart’ which you can watch the video for below. It’s a bit less jaunty than the Fannies of recent years, with lines such as “Walk, don’t run, but run from the miserablites / Who believe in no fun, unless it’s what they think is right.” Which miserablite are they talking about? Continue reading “Teenage Fanclub return with new line-up, video – Watch”

Pick of the Political Pops: 10CC “The Sacro Illiac”

Our eagle-eyed reader (we’ve established that there is one of you) will remember that last week we were somewhat nervous at being summoned unto the company of The Big Boss Editor. Fear not gentle reader – not only did we survive but we came away with a fulsome sense of responsibility, a warm feeling of loyalty and a belly full of gin. Continue reading “Pick of the Political Pops: 10CC “The Sacro Illiac””

Charles Wesley Godwin “Seneca” (Independent, 2019)

Charles Wesley Godwin’s debut album, ‘Seneca’, is traditional country music in a very literal sense: these songs are tales of the rural landscapes and working people of his West Virginian home. Musically and lyrically, the album is an incredibly well-realised sonic picture of the Appalachians, almost an immersive concept album that transports the listener to the region’s mountains, valleys, creeks, mills and mines. The hard-working people of these narratives are: “…the backbone of a nation,” as Godwin sings on ‘Here in Eden’. This is their story. Continue reading “Charles Wesley Godwin “Seneca” (Independent, 2019)”

Track Premiere – China “Crossing The Ohio”

Crossing The Ohio‘ is the new single from  folk-rock band China’s album ‘And then nothing happened‘, released through Royal Oakie Records.  China take their musical cues from the likes of Neil Young, The Byrds, and The Band.  Theirs is not a revival sound though – they consider themselves revisionists -reinterpreting those classic sounds through the lens of the last 30 years of indie rock and underground music. Continue reading “Track Premiere – China “Crossing The Ohio””

Tom Russell “October in the Railroad Earth” (Proper, 2019)

It takes some sand to put out an album that shoots for “Jack Kerouac meets Johnny Cash in Bakersfield”. Tom Russell’s extensive resume and impeccable pedigree notwithstanding, it’s a high bar to set. The songs on his new album ‘October in the Railroad Earth’ easily sail over that bar. The album’s title track is borrowed from a lyrical poem by Kerouac and serves as both a reflection on and restatement of the urgent search that drove the beat poet. The final track is a return to the first song Russell ever learned, Johnny Cash’s ‘Wreck of the Old 97’. But it’s worth considering whether the album’s larger than life book-ends are merely points of contrast for the most pressing matters taken up in between. Continue reading “Tom Russell “October in the Railroad Earth” (Proper, 2019)”

Danny Schmidt “Standard Deviation” (Live Once, 2019)

Danny Schmidt’s 10th studio album, ‘Standard Deviation’, continues to showcase the strength of his song writing capability, with diverse subject matter covering (among other topics) family, fatherhood, addict recovery, miscarriage and Dylan, all while maintaining a generally positive upbeat feel. The theme of family and friends features strongly throughout. Continue reading “Danny Schmidt “Standard Deviation” (Live Once, 2019)”

Yo La Tengo, EartH, London, February 17th 2019

From the apologetic shuffle onstage and into the woozy beat driven ‘You Are Here’, Yo La Tengo made sure that the faithful who had gathered to see them in this extraordinary venue knew that they were witnessing true artists at work such was the low key nature of both entrance and performance. It fitted perfectly with the surroundings – a repurposed cinema where the stage was in everyone’s view and which had the sense of a scientific lecture as the audience disseminated every movement and instrumental switch made by the band. The feeling was heightened by the minimal lighting that often left the band in a murky darkness whilst the audience was bathed in purple. Continue reading “Yo La Tengo, EartH, London, February 17th 2019”