Showing posts with label John Fullbright. Show all posts
Showing posts with label John Fullbright. Show all posts

Jan 9, 2015

Kelcy Reflects on 2014, Chris Knight, Babies, etc.

Things I'm Glad I Experienced or Discovered in 2014:
by Kelcy Salisbury


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2014 was a momentous year for me in a lot of ways, personally & professionally. These are the best things that I experienced, discovered, or rediscovered in the past year, in no particular order.

Jason Boland & The Stragglers with Chris Knight live at Joe's on Weed Street.  

Joe's has a lot of history in "TX/Red Dirt" music, especially for a venue in Chicago. This past summer I checked 2 firsts off my list: I saw a show at Joe's & I saw Chris Knight. It was everything I'd hoped for & then some. I met Chris Knight - he killed a bunch of people in song - but I'm still here for now.

Ray Wylie Hubbard live was everything I'd hoped for & then some. Ray put on a great show in a really cool room, was gracious enough to put me on his guest list though we'd never met, and was just about the coolest cat to talk to that you'd ever hope to meet. Ray Wylie Hubbard is exactly who you think he is, only better.

I finally started listening to American Aquarium & now I'm sad that Burn, Flicker, Die didn't make it into my best of 2013 list. These guys are going to lead the charge to take back country music right alongside Turnpike Troubadours. They're the truth.

I discovered Fistful Of Beard a few months too late to ever see a live show, which is quite a shame, but they left behind one really good album.

I finally got around to listening to John Fullbright's solo stuff around the time my daughter was born. She's 10 months old & Song For A Child might be her favorite song.

I rediscovered, through my daughter, how much FUN music is supposed to be. She already loves music & she already knows how to find John Fullbright, The Trisha's, Jason Boland & Brandy Clark on my phone whenever she's feeling like an impromptu dance party. Her favorite dancing song is probably Mike Ness (of Social Distortion) covering I Fought The Law, and if you've never seen this child jam out to that song, I feel bad for you. 



Jan 6, 2015

Kelcy Salisbury's Top 10 Albums of 2014

There was so much great music released this year that I really couldn't keep up with all of it.
You'll note this list excludes Sturgill Simpson's masterpiece, Metamodern Sounds In Country Music. Much like Jason Isbell's Southeastern last year, that album has gotten so much coverage that there's really nothing to add. It's a potentially genre redefining masterwork.

That said, these are the albums (out of what I heard this year) that topped my personal list.

 
10) Lydia Loveless - Somewhere Else
Call it alt country, call it country rock, call it whatever you like, just call it good! Loveless has a wonderfully smoky vocal quality, the music is well done, but the songwriting really sets this apart. "Verlaine Shot Rimbaud" may be a bit too obscure a literary reference for the pop-country crowd, but Loveless doesn't seem to care. She throws it all out there with a tale-it-or-leave-it attitude & that's the biggest appeal of this album that in any other year would likely be in my top-5 or better.

 
9) Shooter Jennings & Waylon Jennings - Fenixon
I will admit to being a huge Waylon Jennings fan, so just the opportunity to hear his voice on some (kind of) new tracks predisposed me to want to listen to this album. In Waylon's autobiography he mentioned that his son was a fan of 90s industrial bands such as Ministry, and that he too had developed an appreciation for that sound. Now we finally get to hear the project that a then-16 Shooter made with his father back in the 90s. It's not a country album by any stretch, it's an industrial album of mostly Waylon tunes & it works. Standout tracks include the Shooter-penned I Found The Body & White Room, but the whole thing is a really cool passion project that worked on a level I never expected.
 
 


8) Jackson Taylor & The Sinners - Live At Billy Bob's Texas
I reviewed this one earlier in the year, so I won't spend a ton of space on it other than to say that it's one of the top 3 Billy Bob's albums ever made, in my opinion. It captures the band at the height of their Rance Cox period & it's raw, real, energetic & in-your-face. Jackson's Social Distortion meets Billy Joe Shaver sound is at it's zenith here & the DVD is also killer.

 
7) John Fullbright - Songs
I got into Johns solo work a little late, though I'd seen him as a member of Turnpike Troubadours in the earliest days of that band. This isn't really a country album & it's not a folk album either. It's just an album of songs & some pretty fine ones. The One Who Lives Too Far is absolutely amazing songwriting, and the whole album is just effortlessly cool.

 

6) Stoney LaRue - Aviator
There are divorce albums & then there is this one. The most brutally honest lyrics of Stoney's career accompanied by lush, if subtle harmonies make this a beautiful yet still bold artistic statement.

 
5) Tyler McCumber Band - Saracene Sessions, Tape 2
Unfortunately this album is not yet readily available. Physical copies can be purchased through Tyler's Facebook page, but it's not on iTunes yet. That's an incredible shame because this is music that needs to be heard. Old Crow & Monsters truly stand out.
 
 


4) Micky & The Motorcars - Hearts From Above
The younger Braun brothers have made a statement that perhaps surpasses even Reckless Kelly. It's primarily an album of love songs, but retains the driving, whiskey-soaked feel of previous MMC albums. There's not a weak track; be sure to listen to the whole thing. 


I've previously reviewed the album & while I don't really have anything new to say, it's held up remarkably well through repeated listens. This one can be purchased on iTunes, luckily.

 

2) Brandy Clark - 12 Stories
(*Editor's note - This is a 2013 release but I'll let it slide since he said "best I've heard this year")
This album gives me more hope for the future of mainstream country music than anything I've heard in a while, including Kacey Musgraves. It's been covered ad infinitum in other places, so I won't go track by track, suffice to say it's hands-down the best mainstream country album I've heard all year. If you have to sample tracks check out Hungover & Take A Little Pill.

 

1) Matt Woods - With Love From Brushy Mountain
I'm a sucker for songwriting. I'll admit it. If you've got something to say, something that HAS to be said, something with some urgency to it, I'm going to listen more closely.

That said, nothing I heard all year packed the same gut-pinch intensity of Matt Woods tour-de-force, With Love From Brushy Mountain. Woods singing voice might not be for everyone, and I don't see how anybody can maintain the level of intensity that this album contains for the long term. But even if Woods never records another song, Dead Mans Blues, Lying On The Floor & the title track could be the future benchmark for intensity in songwriting. Do yourself a favor & give this one a couple of very hard listens.


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By Kelcy Salisbury

Jun 25, 2014

Top Albums of 2014: 1/2 Report


This will change a great deal in the next 6 months, but it gives you a good snapshot of just how strong the music world is right now - despite my usual rantings and ravings otherwise.


1. Sturgill Simpson - Metamodern Sounds in Country Music




3. Lydia Loveless - Somewhere Else


4. John Fullbright - Songs


5. Bruce Robison & Kelly Willis - Our Year


6. The War on Drugs - Lost In the Dream


7. Drive-by Truckers - English Oceans


8. Jimbo Mathus - Dark Night of the Soul


9. Fire Mountain - All Dies Down


10. Lee Bains III & The Glory Fires - Dereconstructed


11. Old 97s - Most Messed Up


12. St. Paul and the Broken Bones - Half the City


13. Kelsey Waldon - The Goldmine




15. Nikki Lane - All or Nothin'




17. Jason Eady - Daylight and Dark


18. Josh Nolan - Fair City Lights


19. First Aid Kit - Stay Gold


20. Beck - Morning Phase


21. Whiskey Myers - Early Morning Shakes


22. Willie Nelson - Band of Brothers


23. Jeff Whitehead - Bloodhound Heart


24. Cloud Nothings - Here and Nowhere Else


25. Mastodon - Once More 'Round the Sun

Favorite Songs of 2014: 1/2 Report

Here are my favorite songs of the year thus far. No rankings yet; they're arranged only in alphabetical order at this point. You may notice a glaring omission, namely Sturgill Simpson. Problem is, even after 30+ listens to Metamodern Sounds in Country Music (which you'll see on the best 
albums list later today), I still can't pick out a favorite. If forced, I'd probably go with 
"Turtles All the Way Down." A Spotify playlist has been added below.


Feb 8, 2013

YouTube Gems: John Fullbright

From 2012's From the Ground Up (which is still new to me), here's John Fullbright with "Gawd Above."

Jan 3, 2013

FTM Top 75 Albums of 2012: 21-50

We're getting close now. Almost any of these could have easily made the top 20 in a lesser year. 
Did I miss anything? Well, wait and tell me tomorrow when I reveal FTM's top 20 albums of 2012. 
For now. 21-50:

Full of wit and askew approaches, Corb's Cabin Fever has nearly completed my transformation from respectful admirer to fan to obsessed fan. He's an acquired taste, 
but it's well worth the effort coming around to his unique vibe and sound. 
Standout tracks: Bible on the Dash, One Left in the Chamber, Cows Around


23. The Gaslight Anthem - Handwritten


Who'd have ever thought you'd see Kellie on a Farce the Music "best of" list and not just 
in ridiculous memes and jokes about her "blonde-ness" and amplifications to her figure? Well here she is. 
She said she'd put out a classic country album and she followed through. 100 Proof is not just an experiment either - it's full-blown, cry in your beer, lock your cheatin' spouse out, burn down the honky tonk country music. And for her effort? No hits and dropped from her label. Nashville sucks. 
Standout tracks: Long As I Never See You Again, Mother's Day.


A late discovery that probably would have ended up much higher on this list if I'd had more time with it. 
RIYL: Ryan Adams, Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark.
Standout tracks: Jericho(!), Forgotten Flowers



30. Soundgarden - King Animal

31. Japandroids - Celebration Rock




Another album that might have climbed higher if I'd heard it earlier. Imagine Fleet Foxes with (100x) 
the vitality and actual hooks. Makes sense because J. Tillman was a member of Fleet Foxes. 
Fear Fun retains a lot of the indie vibe with its off-kilter lyrics but delivers for those of us who prefer a rootsier sound with a true alt-country delivery and even some Gram Parsons-esque desert rock.
Standout tracks: Nancy From Now On, Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings

I can't say enough about this band. If you'd like Lucero by way of The Ramones, this is the album for you.
Passion, sorrow, humor and swagger. It's all here. And just look at that cover.
Standout tracks: White Bluff, Daddy's Breath

37. Rival Sons - Head Down

38. The Dirty Guv'nahs - Somewhere Beneath These Southern Skies


40. Alan Jackson - Thirty Miles West



43. Jack White - Blunderbuss

44. Kathleen Edwards - Voyageur





49. fun. - Some Nights

50. Frank Ocean - channel orange

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