Gillian Welch has confirmed the digital release of ‘Boots No.2: The Lost Songs, Vol.1’ which will come out at the end of this month via Acony Records, the independent record label she and partner David Rawlings founded in 2001. The new collection is unearthed from a cache of home demos and reel-to-reel recordings and is the second release of archival music from the vault of Gillian Welch and David Rawlings. The 48 song collection, spread over three volumes and produced by Rawlings, was recorded between the making of ‘Time (The Revelator)’ and ‘Soul Journey’ and is described as “an intimate glimpse at the artist’s sketchbook, containing some lifelong themes as well as some flights of fancy. The versatility and quality shown here greatly expand the Welch/Rawlings canon, and confirm that the acclaimed studio albums from the pair have never been an accident, but a clear artistic choice.” It will be available digitally on July 31st, with volumes 2 and 3 following in the coming months.
Welch has already released the first two songs from the collection, ‘Strange Isabella’ and ‘Mighty Good Book’ which you can hear below. Said the duo about the release, “We stashed these recordings away years ago. Their shortcomings, real or imagined, technical or compositional, no longer seem bothersome today. Hearing them now is like seeing snapshots that captured moments the more formal portraits missed. So here we are hurrying them for release before the next tornado blows the whole shoebox away.”
“These songs disorient you in time because Gillian Welch blends past and present in a way that makes the past, present.” Jedediah Purdy writes in the album’s liner notes. “To listen through Boots 2 is to feel you have gotten thoroughly lost, and maybe drunk or worse, in a landscape of strangers. It is also to feel that, wandering through that landscape, you might actually never have left your house, and it might not matter whether you did or not, since you have become a stranger to yourself. It is like going through weeks when the sun refuses to shine, or maybe your body just refused to go out and meet it, because the sun had become hateful to you. Saying that it feels this way — which it does — risks making this music sound like a bummer. It is not. It is a trip. It is also a joy.” He further expounds, “by making art of an experience that, in life, is usually fraught with inarticulacy and bewilderment, these songs make obscurity vivid, strangeness intimate, dissolution into something solid and alive. Music like this makes broken existence fleetingly whole.”
The new album comes after 2016’s ‘Boots No. 1: The Official Revival Bootleg’, a double album of unreleased outtakes, alternate versions, and demos from the making of the seminal 1996 debut album.
‘Boots No. 2 : The Lost Songs Vol. 1’ Tracklisting
1. Johnny Dear
2. First Place Ribbon
3. Give That Man A Road
4. Mighty Good Book
6. Fly Down
7. Shotgun Song
9. Strange Isabella
10. Little Luli
11. Valley of Tears
12. Blind On The Inside
13. Back Turn And Swing
16. Here Come The News
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