Showing posts with label Kevin Broughton. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kevin Broughton. Show all posts

Jan 3, 2020

Kevin's Top 10 Albums of 2019




Kevin Broughton’s Top 10 Albums of 2019

I think 2019 was a really good year for songwriting and debut albums. I’d also note some consensus I had with other FTM contributors; seven of my Top 10 made the critics’ Top 10 as well.  And my list falls on a definitive Lone Star-to-Appalachia axis, with four Texans, three Kentuckians and one West Virginian winning accolades. 

1. Dalton Domino – Songs From The Exile

A change of pace, style and life converge in this brilliant follow up to 2017’s Corners. On this album it’s all about the lyrics, and the artist is brutally honest in his self-reflection. The lyrical imagery is reminiscent of Isbell’s Southeastern, and one hopes that sobriety will have a similarly positive impact on Domino’s career going forward. Even if Songs From The Exile is his upper limit, it’s a worthy career-defining effort.

I didn’t cross paths with this album till late in the year, several months after its release. It’s still in heavy rotation.

2. Vandoliers – Forever

Josh Fleming and his rowdy band of Texas rockers had their wish come true when they inked a deal with Bloodshot records, then rewarded the label’s faith in them with this tour de force. It’s an album that combines Fleming’s focused, fiery storytelling with the raw, rough-edged roots you might hear from Lucero or the Old 97s. And oh, the fiddles and horns!

3. Whiskey Myers – self-titled

It’s counterintuitive that this band self-produced a masterpiece after having two great records helmed by all-everything Dave Cobb, but that’s exactly what happened here. There’s depth and balance to this album, but ultimately it’s a Southern rock record in the very best tradition of a nearly forgotten genre. “Houston County Sky” channels The Marshall Tucker Band, and “Little More Money” and “Bad Weather” are right out of Dirty South-era Drive By Truckers. “Hammer” is a sultry, swampy reminiscence of early Black Crowes. This album is a triumph, and long-awaited.

4. Jason Hawk Harris – Love And The Dark

Bloodshot continues its hot streak of great debut records. Harris endured an unimaginable series of tragedies in the few years leading up to this album, yet managed to emerge with clarity and hopefulness. He’s a brilliant songwriter who also deserves legitimate Isbell comparisons.

5. Ian Noe – Between The Country

This guy. He writes this generation’s “Sam Stone,” about every other cut. Born for this time, in this day’s Kentucky. The sad, hard truth, from the guy who’s been milling it for a good, long while.

6. Charles Wesley Godwin – Seneca
Godwin paints a rich and honest portrayal of his homeland and its people with his debut album. Seneca is a moving snapshot of life and well-soiled roots in the Appalachian hills, a backdrop that has given birth to some of the most intelligent and hard-working people in the country.

7. Kelsey Waldon – White Noise/White Lines

A tough, touring gal posts up with an album and band that shows John Prine was right to sign her to O Boy Records. It’s dreamy and trippy and wonderful, and she’s so full of confidence. Kelsey Waldon will amaze.

8. Drivin N Cryin – Live The Love Beautiful

The band’s first full-length album in a decade, it’s a top-4 or-5 in the all-time catalog. Kevn and the band are comfortable in their skin, three decades in. And Trailer was right to put “Ian MacLagan” in his top songs of the year.

9. Chris Knight – Almost Daylight

A couple of things about the fact that all the great Chris Knight songs sound alike: They all rock, they’re all true. And he only puts albums out about every five years. Wait. That’s three things. I don’t care. He’s William Freaking Callahan.

10. Flatland Cavalry – Homeland Insecurity

Building on 2016’s Humble Folks – a fantastic album – this one is well-enough produced to ask if Flatland might crack the mainstream. Maybe this could be a “crossover” act that could win converts?


Dec 19, 2019

Road Dispatch / Dalton Domino / Roswell, GA


On the heels of his critically acclaimed breakthrough album Songs From The Exile, Dalton Domino has eschewed traditional venue-based touring in favor of a daunting, national, 50-set house show circuit. Dalton and tour manager Doug explained that they put out some social media feelers and were bombarded by more than 600 email responses in just a few hours.

This tour stop in East Cobb County was organized by the fine folks at Georgia Red Dirt Country, who go above and beyond to promote music from the Lone Star Republic, right here in the Thirteenth Colony.

Domino is in fine storytelling form in this intimate setting, a nice quiet place for a song about a little sister who got taken away, “Half Blood.”


One of a bunch of great songs that made Songs From The Exile my album of the year.

And once again, thanks to the awesome @dirt_Georgia for the hospitality & kindred musical spirit. They’re a must-follow for the Red Dirt fan in Georgia.

~Kevin B.

Dec 13, 2019

From the “Songs of the Year Dept.” Jason Hawk Harris


By Kevin Broughton

Jason Hawk Harris, “Grandfather”




From his Bloodshot Records* debut, Love and The Dark, a heavenly ode full of honest questions from Jason Hawk Harris. The studio version is grand and sweeping, but we choose an acoustic take here to demonstrate why he’s one of two folks in our top 10 with Isbell-esque chops and potential.

And if we did a top 10 for songwriting, he’d be the all-around champ.




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