Langhorne Slim has taken a “step sideways” from 2015’s The Spirit Moves in order to move forward. The result is a more stripped-back offering that retains much of Slim’s defiant introspection albeit in a more lo-fi folk style than previously. Recorded at Stinson Beach, California where views of the ocean have inspired numerous artists, “Lost at Last” sees Slim channel his desire for individuality into thirteen tracks that may lack some polish but gain a raw authentic feel. It’s a collection of songs, recorded almost spontaneously with a backing cast of seasoned Slim veterans like bassist Paul Defiglia and drummer Malachi DeLorenzo who also takes producing credits alongside Mt Davidson of Twain who contributes pedal steel among other things. Continue reading “Langhorne Slim “Lost at Last Vol 1” (Dualtone Records 2017)”
Ten months after he wowed an audience at Celtic Connections, Nathan Bell returned to Glasgow as promised. In the interim he had ditched a proposed album of love songs, electing instead to record a modern protest album, Love > Fear (48 hours in traitorland). Appalled by the election of “a clown,” Bell was like a modern Woody Guthrie on the album, his tales of ordinary folk, ground down and abandoned, delivered with conviction. Continue reading “Nathan Bell + Jack Henderson, Fallen Angels Club, The Admiral Bar, Glasgow, 17th November 2017.”
Lovely little piece in Rolling Stone Country yesterday about Bloodshot’s new Christmas comp which we’ll be reviewing any day now here at AUK. It beats the Bublé if you can beat your auntie to the CD player: “No matter where you fall on the love-it-or-hate-it Christmas-music spectrum, no one can escape the seasonal certainty of a new batch of holiday-themed albums guaranteed to roll out just as soon as (or, in some cases, before) the Halloween candy is gone. However, hiding out among the predictable retreads and reissues of this year’s yuletide collection lies the refreshingly irreverent 13 Days of Xmas from Bloodshot Records – a left-of-center, 100-proof Christmas compilation that simultaneously functions as both a warm invitational and a welcome escape from all the trappings and traps of the season. Continue reading “Bloodshot release not crap Christmas compilation”
This is the BK’s eighth record and it was self-produced in their own studio, so there’s no one else to blame. It’s not an inch away from their usual muddied fuzzy sound. They indistinctly reference classic rock and classic country rock, and they’d probably kill to be likened to Crazy Horse but their default sound is a kind of Claymation version of that music. Where Crazy Horse will often soar, with them it never leaves the ground: it’s heavy where it doesn’t need to be and obscured where it should be clear. Continue reading “Buffalo Killers “Alive And Well In Ohio” (Alive Records, 2017)”
Atlanta-based, The Whiskey Gentry, whose album Dead Ringer on Pitch-A-Tent Records was released earlier this year, pushes the band to a fuller more adventuress guitar powered sound. Fronted by the effervescent Lauren Staley who, alongside husband, Jason Morrow, has been blending country with rock’n’roll, bluegrass and gritty honky-tonk whilst performing over 150 dates a year, including such festivals as Shaky Knees, Shaky Boots, Merlefest, Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion and FloydFest. Americana-UK’s Maurice Hope catches up Staley in between dates. Continue reading “Interview: The Whiskey Gentry”
Love Left Lost is the new single from Brighton singer-songwriter Josh McGovern. Blessed with a deep baritone with a fantastic timbre it’s fortunate that he also has the knack for writing dark and moody folk songs that vibrate with tension and a sombre precognition of bleakness to come. Josh has said of this song “I wrote ‘Love Left Lost’ after falling off the rails and spending a few months in my own head. It was in the dead of winter and I had felt inadequate in the wake of some rough times, so I locked myself away in my old friend Jim’s house whilst he was away and wrote the song. It may sound clichéd but I’ve always found writing music helps me get through those phases we all experience from time to time”. Whilst it’s heavy stuff it’s mostly heavy with portent and meaning.
From his excellent new album Postcards From Magdalena, here’s a live version of Everything Will Change.
Really interesting piece up on RS today about an americana legend and a slightly less well known musician: “A lot of lore surrounds the brief but colorful career of Townes Van Zandt, the gifted songwriter who died in 1997 from a heart attack at age 52, with much of it dedicated to his unbridled substance abuse. His biographies invariably note the heroin overdose he survived in the early 1970s, but the untold story is how Van Zandt’s life was saved that day – by musician Daniel Antopolsky. Continue reading “RS on the songwriter who saved Townes Van Zandt’s life”
Richard Schroder certainly looks like he’s put in the spade work with his debut album, seeking out advice from songwriting coach, Steve Seskin, who says that what separates the debutant from his peers is his willingness to undertake endless re-writes of songs in order to hone them to perfection. Aside from the two years it’s taken him to make the album, Schroder also surrounded himself with some of the best musicians in the business, including Duke Levine (who’s worked with Roseanne Cash and Mary Chapin Carpenter), as well as getting the record mastered by a Grammy award winner who’s assisted Carrie Underwood. Continue reading “Richard Schroder “Drive” (Tinderbox Music, 2017)”
New Jersey’s Anthony D’Amato is no stranger to the road, his insatiable desire to take his music all around the world inevitable means mile after mile on the byways and highways. Travelling alone brings its own problems, yet inevitably leaves him a lot of time to both reflect on life, take pictures and, of course, listen to some of his favourite tunes. In the UK for a number of shows alongside Deacon Blue’s Ricky Ross and The Felice Brothers’ Ian Felice promoting his current album Cold Snap, Americana-UK catches up with the old (young!)road dog to make sure all is fine and dandy. Continue reading “Van Life: Anthony D’Amato”