When I first heard this track from Vern Matz, I was really taken aback by its fragility. There’s something about the song that made it seem like it could break into a million pieces inside my ears. Circling back, the depth is built into the song so subtly that it honestly took me a few turns to really hear the bending of the guitar strings in the Western horizon, riding atop a solemn drum role. Perhaps its familiarity provided an easy access point, so I figured I’d slow roll this Friday and let you slide into the weekend nice and slow.
I’ve always wandered what exactly is a Marijuana Sweet Tooth, but I like to think its the band’s approach to songwriting, offering their listeners a relaxed calm that you’ll beg to revisit. They quietly dropped a new single this week, as solemn as one would expect, yet drifting in its sentiment. Guitars slide behind the vocals, while other notes are carefully strummed to supply emphasis to the voice. I love how the male and female roles seem to go back and forth with one another, yet they often share the same ideas. If you’re looking to fade away into the day, then press play below.
As I strive to prove that modern country music goes beyond Sturgill Simpson, let me introduce you to New York based band New Rose. Their take on the genre veers in more of the slacker style with slow strummed acoustics and trippy pedal steel in the background. If my description doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, check out this new single “Waiting On Me” and make your own assessment. To me, it’s as if Destroyer started a group with Sun Volt as the backing band.
While Will Johnson has long been a revered songwriter in Texas, I don’t think he’s ever fully indulged in the state’s penchant for country ballads. He offers us glimpses in various releases, and this new single is one such tune. His voice remains his distinctive trademark, but it’s the sliding guitar, bellowing backing vocals and the light percussive touches that really set up the landscape for his approach here. Hatteras Night, a Good Luck Charm will be released on March 24th, giving us a full album’s worth of what are great tunes, with scattered tour dates across the country through June.
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As a Texas boy, whether I like it or not, the history of crooning country balladeers runs deep in my blood (I like it, just so you know). Listening to Dougie Poole‘s latest single, I think it’s time we adopt him, and take him in as our own. The structure of the song is calming and slowed down to a horse’s trollop, filled in with some backing atmospherics to add a bit to the track. His voice is other-worldly, something so unique in the modern setting that it’s hard for me not to rush right to the phone and send this one to my mother; it’s going to make you want to cry in the arms of someone you love, which builds promise for Wideass Highway, out on February 17th via JMC Aggregate.
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Plantation Band are working with the good folks of ATH Records (that’s us!) to release their debut album, Most Intellectual. It’s our first foray into country music, but I assure you that labeling the band as such diminishes their abilities. Most Intellectual is the calm before the storm, as those who’ve witnessed the band’s live shows can attest, they’re growing in power, destined for great things. Their debut comes out this Friday, with a release show scheduled in Austin at Cheer Up Charlies on June 1st with their friends A. Sinclair. Stream the album below, fall in love with it and commit your future to the band…be glad you did.
Over at ATH Records, we’ve been working hard to bring you lots of good stuff, but Mike and I felt like we needed to mix it up just a bit. Luckily, an email rolled in with a submission from Plantation Band, offering us a take on their version of country music. Growing up, Townes and Waylon filled my living room, so it seemed like a perfect way to venture into new territory…so as not to get stuck putting out the same LP over and over. I know very little about the band, only some blurred photos they sent our way with the album and its art. The album’s filled with soulful ballads and country stompers, so I wanted to introduce you to the group today. They’re debut LP will come your way this April, so get yourself ready for Austin’s newest country balladeers.
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Tim Campbell and I go way way back. We met long ago; fans of early emo and post-punk, but we both had a history of country and folk in our families, which is perhaps why we bonded so closely (that and a love for Sonic). So Tim’s just put up an EP of good times bedroom folk tunes, bolstered by his friends in the Fayetteville music scene (that he’s long been part of). I’ve quite enjoyed listening to this self-titled EP…and I hope you’ll spend a little time in your day to listen to his mini-album. And…if you feel so inclined please feel free to donate or pay what you want…we all need help from our friends to make music come true.
We just got sent this new track “House Upon the Hill” by Trainwreck Riders and I’m impressed with it’s fresh take on the alt-country genre. We seem to lack at times in this area of the sonic world so I try to incorporate it from time to time. I’m a little late on this track as they just released their new album Ghost Yards last week. If you enjoy this track, I obviously recommend you check out the full album.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/06-House-Upon-The-Hill.mp3]
Download: Trainwreck Riders – House Upon The Hill [MP3]
I’m continuing my recent love affair with new indie super country group Denver today with another new song by the band called “Reno”. It’s more of a waltzy ballad when compared to the last single I posted “The Way It Is”. More information is also available on the group’s planned self-titled LP with a new release date of August 14th just announced. You’ll be picking this one up via Mama Bird Recording Company.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Denver-Reno.mp3]
Download: Denver – Reno [MP3]