Showing posts with label Justin Wells. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Justin Wells. Show all posts

May 5, 2017

Interview With NashCrap's Charles Buchanan

Charles Buchanan is a country music blogger from Shreveport, LA. He runs the review and satire site NashCrap, which has been skewering mainstream country tropes since 2015. We recently sat down with him for an interview to find out about his process and his motivations.

FNN (Farce News Network): Charles, it's good to finally meet you. I've enjoyed your work ever since I saw that hilarious "10 Suckiest Kane Brown Tweets" pop up on my timeline last year. Let's start with some basics; just let us know who Charles Buchanan is.

CB: Well, I'm Charles.. I'm 24 and currently living with my parents. I majored in journalism at LA Tech and am looking for a job and freelancing a little. I enjoy alone time and Hot Pockets.

FNN: Gotta love that home cooking, right? I live at home too! Free laundry son!
So, what made you start NashCrap?

CB: I just got so tired of seeing all the girls who turned me down riding around in $50,000 pickup trucks with jacked dudes, listening to Florida-Georgia Line, that I decided to strike a blow for the little guy! I listened to pop country and actually enjoyed it up until all the guys who used to beat me up in high school started liking it. So I started looking around on the internet for stuff like "Luke Bryan sucks." I found sites like Salvation of Country Music and Country Nevada and Photocrap the Music, and my eyes were opened to a whole new way to get back at the people who live better lives than me!

FNN: It feels good, doesn't it? Hey, tell your mom thanks for these Snickerdoodle cookies. They're awesome. Next question: How do you quantify what 'good' music is, when we all know taste is subjective?

CB: It's pretty easy, actually. Whatever is popular is bad, except Chris Stapleton and whoever else the other country blogs say is okay. Whatever doesn't get played on the radio is good, except Kane Brown… he sucks, obviously.

FNN: A recent editorial on WhiskeyBitch stirred up controversy when it said that people who criticize artists like FGL and Sam Hunt probably weren't popular in high school and are passively aggressively getting back at the "cool kids." Thoughts?

CB: They really hit the nail on the head. I remember back in ninth grade, all the kids made fun of me for my premature baldness. I was really overweight too, so I could never catch the baseball players who'd always steal my toupee. I have never been on one single date, ever. My aunt from out of state who looks really young went to prom with me so I'd have a date, but even she wouldn't dance with me. I have a few friends, but I only know them by screen names. So, what were we talking about again?

FNN: I think you covered it. So now that you're a "big star" in the country blogging world, do you ever get to meet the artists when you go out to shows?

CB: Shows? Like musicals? I went with my mom to see Wicked one time, but I didn't get to meet anybody.

FNN: No. You know, concerts… but since the artists we cover are usually on a smaller scale, they're often just called 'shows.'

CB: Cody Jinks liked one of my Tweets one time.

FNN: That's cool. I really meant, have you spoken to any of the singers you like in person?

CB: Justin Wells messaged me on Facebook and asked that I remove a bad review of his album one time.

FNN: A negative review of his album? That doesn't seem like him.

CB: No, it was a poorly written review. He said he was embarrassed for me.

FNN: Moving on. What do you think of the softening of bro-country? It's less in-your-face now, with more pop and EDM influence. Do you think it's a positive or negative for mainstream country, going forward?

CB: I don't know really. I just look for dumb outfits they wear to make fun of them, or find lyrics I can make memes from. I don't really get that deep into the study of the actual music. Honestly, I wish bro-country was still the way it was a few years ago. It was easier to make top ten lists about.

FNN: Understood. What albums are you listening to right now?

CB: I'm really excited about the new John Moreland. I just love his Springsteen-esque sound and his heartfelt lyrics. Also, Chris Stapleton's new album is sure to be excellent, or so I've read.

FNN: Okay. Lastly, who's really getting your goat in the world of pop country?

CB: Chris Lane! Ha, that hair! He looks so stupid. And Kelsea Ballerini! She just sings "boy" a bunch and she's a star. How fair is that? Florida-Georgia Line always gets me upset. You know? I stopped to take a pee there one time.

FNN: Riveting insight, pal. Thanks Charles. Make sure to check out his great work at NashCrap.hulu and tell 'em FNN sent you!

Jan 3, 2017

Trailer's Top 30 Albums of 2016


We'll turn loose of 2016 with one more post. Trailer's Top 30 of 2016. This is what the "Top Albums of 2016" list would've looked like if we didn't do a group vote now. 


 1. Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial
2. Lori McKenna - The Bird and the Rifle
3. Flatland Cavalry - Humble Folks
4. Brandy Clark - Big Day in a Small Town
5. Cody Jinks - I'm Not the Devil
6. Justin Wells - Dawn in the Distance
7. Austin Lucas - Between the Moon and the Midwest
8. Caleb Caudle - Carolina Ghost
9. Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor's Guide to Earth
10. Brent Cobb - Shine On Rainy Day
11. Kelsey Waldon - I've Got a Way
12. St. Paul and the Broken Bones - Sea of Noise
13. Gojira - Magma
14. Lydia Loveless - Real
15. Luke Bell - s/t
16. Margo Price - Midwest Farmer's Daughter
17. Paul Cauthen - My Gospel
18. Rob Baird - Wrong Side of the River
19. Mark Chesnutt - Tradition Lives
20. Quaker City Night Hawks - El Astronauta
21. Bonnie Raitt - Dig in Deep
22. Miranda Lambert - The Weight of These Wings
23. Western Centuries - Weight of the World
24. BJ Barham - Rockingham
25. Metallica - Hardwired… to Self Destruct
26. Chance the Rapper - Coloring Book
27. Robert Ellis - s/t
28. Hayes Carll - Lovers and Leavers
29. Loretta Lynn - Full Circle
30. Erik Dylan - Heart of a Flatland Boy

Dec 20, 2016

New Video: Justin Wells - The Dogs

One of our favorite songs of the year gets a video. From Dawn in the Distance.


Dec 15, 2016

Farce the Music's Top 10 Songs of 2016



Spotify playlist created by Jon Sorrell below the selections.

1. Lori McKenna - Old Men Young Women
We had a casual poll about 2016 music a month or so back. Lori McKenna led the way on the 
"Best Songwriter of 2016" voting, and it's no surprise. With observant, incisive songs like 
"OMYM" and the others on her brilliant The Bird and the Rifle, McKenna stays at the forefront 
of American songwriting. She has the ability to put the listener into a situation they may have 
never even dealt with and make them think "Yes, this is exactly how that feels!" Here she takes 
on a lover who's moved on to a newer model and skewers the whole clich√© (see title) with pointed lines like "you want the lights off, he wants the lights on, so you can pretend" and "She's the past in a 
summer dress, he's a ride in a new Corvette"…damn, just damn. The Bird and the Rifle is a master-class and for me, "Old Men Young Women" is its centerpiece.


2. Justin Wells - The Dogs
Passion. That's what drives this tune and it's the feeling that comes to mind in describing it. "The Dogs" is an unapologetic portrait of life on the edges, embracing the underdog life of a touring musician trying to drink away a broken heart. He's doing his best, but the hurt bleeds through even on stage: "It ain't easy acting like it ain't personal, and the band asked me not to curse no more." Wells can belt and he does a bit in the chorus, but he knows how to sing with fire even when using restraint. That give and take of emotion, but more so, the palpable tension when it's held in check, is what makes this song one of the best of 2016.


3. Car Seat Headrest - Drunk Drivers/Killer Whales
I don't pretend to know what the hell this song is about; I just know I love it. The lyrics are smart and snarky and anxious and abstract. The music is jangly indie-rock (with a slice of power pop) that's constantly shifting tempos. The hooks though. This freaking song has like 4 hooks. It's crazy, but somehow it works. When that crunching and cathartic "it doesn't have to be like this" refrain finally kicks in, it's nearly as bracing as any face-slapping Nirvana chorus. I've tried to review the album this song is from about ten times this year, but I just don't know what to say about it that would make any sense or sound like I vaguely know what I'm talking about. Just know that it and this song are badass.

4. DJ Shadow & Run the Jewels - Nobody Speak
I already loved this song before its absurdly entertaining video took my affections to a new level. Run the Jewels has a new album coming out early next year, but it was nice to have this reminder of their magnetism in 2016. Underground legend Shadow provides an aggressive, pounding arrangement with just as many memorable turns as the lyricists spit. If I'd done much working out this year, 
this would have been on repeat.


5. Brandy Clark - Love Can Go to Hell
It sounds so sweet but it packs a sting. This time around, Brandy isn't casting barbs at exes and jerks, but at love itself. She doesn't linger on goodbye or blame her former lover; it's the unseen forces of the heart she's wishing ill upon. The instrumentation is light and intoxicating, the melody is gently rolling. "Love Can Go to Hell" ought to be a hit, but maybe it's too good for that.


6. Turnpike Troubadours - Come as You Are
These guys are so damn talented, they didn't even release an album this year and still had one of the best songs. This single from Bruce Robison's The Next Waltz series sounds like something that might've been left off last year's self-titled masterpiece, only because it didn't really fit the feel of that set, not due to any questioning of its merit. This tale of a come-and-go relationship surely set off some smoldering slow dances across Texas dancehalls this year. TPT can do no wrong.


7. Cody Jinks - I'm Not the Devil
There's really not a best song on Jinks' 2016 album. It's an incredibly consistent and 
moving collection without a single droop in quality, much less a weak moment. This tune 
just kinda gets the de facto nod for being probably the most memorable of the bunch. 
Jinks is blessed with a wonderful voice and possibly even better songwriting talents. 
He'll be a star in this realm of music for years to come.


8. Paul Cauthen - I'll Be the One
A voice that recalls Elvis and Waylon Jennings all at once probably could sing the proverbial phone book and make me happy. The fact that this powerful vocalist can also write songs this good should make a lot of other artists jealous. "I'll Be the One" sounds both timeless and modern, sticking in your head with multiple vocal hooks, and moving your feet with a shuffling rhythm. I can't wait to see and hear where this guy goes. There's no ceiling.


9. Austin Lucas w/Lydia Loveless - Wrong Side of the Dream
"I look around at 35 and all I've got are songs." Whew. When this line hits shortly into the song, you know it's not gonna be all sunshine and roses. Lucas has one of the more distinct voices in Americana and adding Loveless turns that chill up your spine into full-fledged goosebumps. 
This is a lonely and longing look at how life on the road affects a relationship. 
Spoiler alert: it ain't good - but it makes for a great song.


10. Rodney Parker and 50 Peso Reward -
The Road Between None and Some
This is probably the coolest song of 2016. It's just "different," I don't know how to describe it best. It starts with a slinky bass line and minimal drums before building only slightly into a mid-tempo groove that never lets up. It's an earworm of the highest caliber - one you don't mind getting trapped in your head for days. Simplicity serves RPFPR well here. This feels like sipping a good beer in a New Orleans dive bar in spring with the door open and a nice breeze blowing in.


Oct 6, 2016

Top 25 Albums of 2016: Trailer's 3/4 Report

 

Here's my top 25 list. It's fluid, as always, so this is just how I'm feeling about them today. 
The year-end list will be a composite from Farce the Music contributors, so it will look a lot 
different than this. There are also nearly 3 months more of new music to sort through... ~Trailer

Trailer's Top 25 Albums of 2016: 3/4 Report

1. Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial
2. Lori McKenna - The Bird and the Rifle
3. Flatland Cavalry - Humble Folks
4. Brandy Clark - Big Day in a Small Town
5. Austin Lucas - Between the Moon and the Midwest
6. St. Paul and the Broken Bones - Sea of Noise
7. Justin Wells - Dawn in the Distance
8. Cody Jinks - I'm Not the Devil
9. Caleb Caudle - Carolina Ghost
10. Kelsey Waldon - I've Got a Way
11. Sturgill Simpson - A Sailor's Guide to Earth
12. Gojira - Magma
13. Lydia Loveless - Real
14. Luke Bell - s/t
15. Robert Ellis - s/t
16. Rob Baird - Wrong Side of the River
17. Drive-by Truckers - American Band
18. Mark Chesnutt - Tradition Lives
19. Quaker City Night Hawks - El Astronauta
20. Bonnie Raitt - Dig in Deep
21. Hayes Carll - Lovers and Leavers
22. Margo Price - Midwest Farmer's Daughter
23. Western Centuries - Weight of the World
24. BJ Barham - Rockingham
25. Loretta Lynn - Full Circle

Aug 26, 2016

Album Review: Justin Wells - Dawn in the Distance

A Review by Trailer

When Fifth on the Floor called it quits last year, it was a real kick in the gut. They were a southern rock band well-beloved around here, and with potential to grow beyond the dive bars and music rooms they were playing. Their songwriting was miles ahead of bands of their ilk, and they possessed a leader in Justin Wells with a powerful, unique and immediately recognizable voice. I felt certain we'd hear from an offshoot of the band, or Justin, eventually, but I didn't know how long it would be.

Thankfully, we didn't have to wait long. Justin is back as a solo act, and he's recently released the stellar Dawn in the Distance.

While there are still moments of almost understated southern rock in the mix, Dawn in the Distance is much closer to being a country album than anything Fifth on the Floor ever released. Justin was adept as the lead singer of a rock band, but he feels more at home here, and the slower tempos allow him to showcase his husky vocals more than ever.

His songwriting also takes a leap forward on Dawn in the Distance, as well. "Going Down Grinnin'" opens with a personal manifesto on moving on from youthful misadventures into adulthood. He's not worried about how past mistakes might affect the journey, though, singing "If a needle in a haystack is the only chance I have, you can burn it to the ground for all I care."

"The Dogs" is a standout. It's another unapologetic portrait of life on the edges. It embraces the underdog life of a touring musician trying to drink away a broken heart. He's trying his best, but the hurt bleeds through even on stage "It ain't easy acting like it ain't personal, and the band asked me not to curse no more."

"The Highway Less Taken" is one of those great southern rock moments, with even some gospel choir-like backing vocals. There's a Dire Straits cover in "So Far Away," where Justin slows the tempo and darkens the mood, giving it a much more haunting feel than the original.

Dawn in the Distance should satisfy every Fifth on the Floor fan, and hopefully find new ears for Justin's ample talents. If it's not an autobiographical journal, he's a damn good actor because you believe every word. There's so much real passion and projected emotion, you'd be a cold soul to come away from listening to this without being affected. Highly recommended to fans of Cody Jinks, Blackberry Smoke, Matt Woods, and the like.



---------

Dawn in the Distance is available on iTunes, Amazon, etc.

Jul 16, 2016

Apr 17, 2013

Justin Wells: The FTM Interview

Interview conducted by Jeremy Harris


Recently I caught up with singer Justin Wells (with a little help from bass player Jason Parsons) from the band Fifth On The Floor to ask him some questions that all inquiring minds were dying to hear before the band's show at Tootle's Pumpkin Inn located in Circleville, Ohio.

FTM: How's the current stretch of the tour (that's ongoing)?

Justin: It's going really good. I think we've done about 80 miles so far. It's been real grueling, we played last night and then we're also gonna play tonight. So.... we're playing two nights back to back. You know the bands starting to fall apart a little bit. Aaron (drummer Aaron Graham) had to check out for a little bit and Parsons (bass player Jason Parsons) has been talking in tongues so we're all ready to go home.

FTM: I thought talking in tongues usually waited until the end of the show.
How much of a relief is it to finally have your album (Ashes & Angels) out on shelves?

Justin: I wasn't aware that is was on shelves.

FTM: That's where people put it after they buy it.

Justin: Yeah, after they return it. No man, it's great. We started working on the thing in January of last year and writing a good year before that. It's a big relief and glad it's out and people are enjoying it. We want people to keep buying it. Buy two copies if you don't already have them.

FTM: With the Moonrunners Festival coming up, are there any acts you would like to see that you've not seen before?

Justin: I was thinking about staying sober so I could see Fifth On The Floor to be honest with you.

FTM: That would be a first and you know a few of their songs.

Justin: I seen Scott H. Biram play a couple of times and he's always a real treat and I'm looking forward to that. The same with Last False Hope because those guys are all good friends of mine. Really just all of it. I've never seen Possessed By Paul James and that should be awesome. I'm just gonna try and stay sober.

FTM: Have you ever had a problem with standing up fast and your ears popping?

Justin: Uh, not but I don't stand up real fast. I don't really do anything real fast. I don't know if you've noticed.

FTM: Yeah, I've been walking with you.

Justin: It's taking us 30 minutes to cross the street. (entire interview conducted within a 1 block walk)

FTM: What was it like playing on the Grand Ole Opry with George Jones?

Justin: Uh (laughs)

FTM: Oops, my bad. I thought you were Charlie Starr from Blackberry Smoke.

Justin: (much more laughing) Yes!

FTM: Ashes & Angels is a great album. I love it. But how much longer will we have to wait before we get a Nelly remix version?

Justin: Nelly is not available unfortunately so we're going to be bringing in LL Cool J since he's making a foray into country music.

FTM: He's done worse already.

Justin: We're currently working on "Distant Memory Lizzand"

FTM: In the standard form of measurement, what size hat do you think your poop wears?

Justin: My poop? (ha ha ha) My poop. Well today it has been wearing about a 5 gallon hat.

FTM: What's the dumbest question you've ever been asked in an interview?

Justin: Uh, what was that question right before this one?

FTM: What's the worst drink a fan has ever bought for you?

Justin: The easy answer is Jägermeister. A more complicated answer is, out in like Iowa and Kansas we found this string of shows where people would bring us this brandy shit. It was like blackberry brandy. That was pretty nasty and this one particular one they're all drinking brandy and this guy gives me this shit and I don't remember what it was called. Parsons might remember. It was menthol flavored. I don't think it was legal to sell or own.

FTM: In one sentence, how would you describe the average Fifth On The Floor fan?

Justin: Despair, period.

FTM: Well I guess that's one sentence.
I've noticed that a lot of your pictures you post on twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are very fuzzy. When we get done can I wipe off your phone camera for you? I think it has some pocket fuzz or something on it.

Justin: It's not fuzz but yeah I would use gloves.

FTM: What would be the dream act for you guys to open up for?

Justin: Oh man, that's a tough one. High up there would be The Allman Brothers Band or Fogerty (Creedence Clearwater Revival frontman John Fogerty). Most of my dream acts aren't around anymore. I would love a chance to open for Shooter Jennings because he's not an outlaw and we're not either. So I just kinda think we could start a new movement of just law. Not outlaw, just law.

FTM: That leads right into my next question. How would it have turned out differently if instead of Dennis Rodman, you had visited North Korea?

Justin: (laughs) I would like to think that they would sacrifice at least their first born to me to sooth me.

FTM: So you're going to be the bad guy to them (the people of North Korea)?

Justin: Not even the bad guy as much as this benevolent force of nature. Kind of like Galactus. I would eat their planet.

FTM: If you could pick one country singer or band to eliminate, who would it be? They will never sing or touch an instrument again.

Justin: This is the most difficult question so far.

FTM: You can not say Fifth On The Floor.

Justin: Eliminate just one act that I despise. That's a tough one man. You're talking about in country music? I'd say in country music I'd have to eliminate LL Cool J. Yeah, that's who I'd get rid of.

Parsons: I second that.

FTM: What is your favorite brand of skinny jeans?

Justin: (laughs) Hey Parsons can you field this one? Let's ask Parsons.

FTM: Tag, Parsons you're in. What's your favorite brand of skinny jeans.

Parsons: (long silent look of confusion)

FTM: Is that your favorite brand that you're wearing or would you like to go with a different brand?

Parson: What are skinny jeans anyway? I don't understand the concept of them.

Justin: Tag, I'm in.

FTM: How often do you guys get negativity on twitter like pointing out that you suck?

Justin: We let management field all of that shit because we've got better things to think about. I mean, we've been on this tour for 2 day and we're kinda nuts deep in our careers and can't be looking back at ex-girlfriends and shit.

FTM: What's your favorite key to play "Wagon Wheel" in?

Justin: Yes...... The one with a capo. The key of Hootie.

FTM: Is this the worst interview you've ever done?

Justin: Yeah. Ol yeah. Absolutely. I don't like you people.

FTM: Mission accomplished. Brantley Gilbert or Rascal Flatts?

Parsons: Brantley

Justin: I'd say Rascal Flatts because I'm not very good at shopping.

Parsons: Can it be a cage match to the death between them?

Justin: A little known fact is we actually opened up for Brantley Gilbert years ago and that dude is a mother (f'n) outlaw. That dude is the dude that Shooter is singing about in "The Gunslinger."

FTM: Well that ties right into my next question. If you had to give up one thing would it be your height or your facial hair?

Justin: Golly! Uh, is weight an option?

FTM: No, that's too easy.

Justin: Honestly I could give up either one of those things and still be a guitar god. (the entire band is now laughing. Justin is not.)

FTM: On a scale of 1-10, how much do you love the band Florida-Georgia Line?

Justin: (a long moment of silence) Parsons, do you want this one?

Parsons: I have not heard a single note they've played. I thought they were a cover band down south. I'm serious about that.

Justin: Just don't call them outlaws.

Parsons: I was just told that they were a real band?

FTM: Believe it or not we actually have some fan submitted questions. First one is from Jason A. from Georgia. "How do you expect people to believe you're a real country band when you don't sing about trucks?"

Justin: Uh Jason, we wrote the song ...f'n "Georgia"

FTM: Maybe he's never heard that one. Blake S. from Texas (Editor's note: Blake S. is from Oklahoma) would like to know "What would it take to get you to join me in a drinking contest and how many wine coolers do you think you could handle?"

Justin: My beard could kick your forehead's ass anytime and any day.

FTM: Amy H from Ohio "Can you pick up toilet paper and milk on your way home...... Uh oops. That was my wife texting me. My bad.

Justin: (laughter has now turned to squealing)

FTM: Toby K from Oklahoma "I've listened to y'alls albums and I can't tell if you're for the troops or the taliban, please clear this up."

Parsons: We've all got beards but hell man.

Justin: Our new album is called "Ashes & Angels". Does that not answer your question?

Parsons: It's the symbolism, the symbolism.

Justin: Shhh.

FTM: Shooter J from California, New York, Tennessee or wherever he's at right now wants to know "Will you help me get something off of the top shelf?"

Justin: (the entire band has now arrived to laugh) Man Shooter, I'll be glad to help you anytime I can if you'll just take off the f'n sunglasses when you're inside.

FTM: Good enough man. Thanks a lot.

Justin: Yeah, thank you. That's awesome, I want to do another one.

------------------


Fifth on the Floor's latest album, Ashes and Angels, can be purchased here or the usual outlets.

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