The new Drive By Truckers’ album was released on March 16th and I was pretty excited about this one. It’s a full-blown PRODUCTION kind of album. How big is Big To-Do? Well, that depends on whether you bought the vinyl or the CD, see? (“Girls Who Smoke” was only released on the vinyl.) Wait, what? Why?
I’m a big Drive By Truckers fanatic and I can never wait for the next show or the next album. A live Trucker show is like a shot in the arm, and not in that bad way . . . The new CD is like reading a good book. Lots of story-songs on this one. Patterson tells smutty tales of some bad-ass characters and Cooley sings about hookers and being jobless. You know, everyday life stuff.
You all know by now my penchant for owning the physical disc. Even when times are hard. I’d love to tell you it’s because my high morals won’t allow me to copy OPD’s (other people’s discs) but, well, I just really like to peel off the wrappers and pop out the pretty inserts and stuff.
And, I do like to cuss the postal system when it’s late, cuss the state of our society because there are no independent music stores – you know, get myself a little worked up. Then, when I finally get my hands on the actual item, I run my fingers over the lyrics booklet, read the dedication and thank yous and all before I listen from track one to the very end.
From the moment I sussed out the info that Steve Earle was releasing "Townes", I knew I’d have to have that one. It’s a forever keeper. And, Guy Clark’s "Sometimes the Song Writes You" was getting multiple rave reviews before I’d ever heard of it, so I internet-ordered that. Kris Kristofferson’s "Closer to the Bone" kept me camped out by the mailbox for a while. Well worth the frostbite, though.
There is this Dallas band I’ve been hearing about. They’re called The O’s. And last week they came up here to Denver to play some fancy gig at the Brown Palace.
Turns out that gig was private and they felt bad that their other Denver fans wouldn’t be able to see them so they tacked on another gig after the fancy gig (thanks to Jay Bianchi of Owsley’s Golden Road for scheduling The O’s at the last minute).
So I get Ronnie Fauss’s EP, New Songs for the Old Frontier (FTG Records), in the mail today. I play it a couple times and immediately fall in love with it. Then I play my favorite track (favorite so far – these things change) for Bucky.
“How do you like my new favorite song?:” I ask him.
“It’s good!” he says. ‘Is that Jeff Tweedy?”
“Nope,” I reply, smugly. “It’s someone you’ve never heard of.”
“Yeah?” he says. “Sure about that? ‘Cause it sounds like Pre-
So the Drive-By Truckers have another release and another triumph. The Fine Print (A Collection Of Oddities And Rarities 2003-2008) is a collection of alternate takes, covers made for tribute albums, and stuff that just plain never made it on a legitimate DBT disc. If you are like me, you may have already heard some of this stuff in your tremendous collection of live DBT shows generously made available on the internets but there were a couple of very pleasant surprises for me. Plus, this is worth buying just for Patterson Hood’s liner notes. . . I won’t spoil the surprise by quoting too extensively but they had me laughing and thinking at the same time.
So I’m listening to the Gourds new CD “Haymaker” this week.
This isn’t so much an indepth review of the CD (alright then – here’s the review: It’s good. Go buy it. You don’t really need me to tell you that, do you?) as it is a discussion of dem Gourds and how they make people happy.
You know how I know that? I listen to their stuff. I make my friends listen to their stuff. I make my kids listen to their stuff until they know all the lyrics. It’s good for their vocabularies. Even my cat likes to twist and juke to the Gourds. . .
Jason and the 400 Unit put out a crazy good CD just a year or so ago called Sirens of the Ditch. It had "Brand New Kind of Actress" and "Dress Blues "and got plenty attention. I ordered it pre-released and it’s been played and played and I still love it and it still moves me.
The new self-titled album is a beautiful work of art. No, really, I bought the package deal from their website and got the album and an autographed CD. My record spinner is out of commission right now, but I had to have that big ol’ album, just for the cover art. Browan Lollar did it. Talk about multi-talented, this band’s got that wrapped. Jason’s just a wizard at everything.
The 400 Unit is Browan Lollar, Derry deBorge, Jimbo Hart and Matt Pence. They’re no slouches. Look them up, if you haven’t. Those of you who like to cherry-pick songs (which I still find kinda weird) try "Sunstroke" first. If you love it, try "Good" too. If you don’t think you love either of ‘em and you just wanna drink beer and get in touch with your inner cowboy, give a listen to "Cigarettes and Wine". If that don’t get ya, I’ll cry in my beer for you.
Somewhere between awesome and cool, Stewboss has always been about road trips, dreams, favorite songs, wanting to meet girls, meeting girls, losing girls, missing girls, and wanting to get back with girls – all while doing a really serious head bob to a wicked ass groove that screams for more cowbell. It’s an approach that works for them – partly because of the passion and sincerity that come with the deeply felt sentiments – and partly because of the wicked ass grooves. As far as I can tell, wicked ass grooves have never hurt anyone, except possibly the odd groin injury. (more…)
If you haven’t heard all the raving about the newest Drive-By Truckers’ release, Brighter Than Creation’s Dark, then you haven’t been paying attention! This one’s getting lots of positive press. Patterson Hood, Mike Cooley and Shonna Tucker have written the 19 songs on this 75 minute long album, which has exceeded even my expectations and I expect a lot.
I’ve been pretty much obsessed with this band since I first heard them on a scratchy cassette tape on a road trip in ’04. Got home and quickly educated myself on Southern Rock Opera (I grew up down there; it wasn’t hard to grasp!). I marinated in The Dirty South and Decoration Day and all those educational little ditties for a year or two until I emerged to A Blessing And A Curse, two nervous breakdowns, only one of which was mine, then a Rock Show, The Dirt Underneath Tour, a couple of t-shirts and I’m okay now. (more…)
You know when you share someone’s musical taste, you’re gonna like the music they come up with. So if you like Hayes Carll, Jon Dee Graham, Joe Ely, Robert Earl Keen, and those kinds of guys, Leaving, TX, is right down your alley.
In Anywhere On Good Roads, the boys from Leaving, TX have come up with a fine sophomore release filled with songs about drinkin’, smokin’, lyin’, and killin’. And drinkin’. Okay, pretty much all the songs are about drinkin’. But that’s okay. We like that.