Monday, August 31, 2009

Wolfmother New Album

I don't often hype metal but Wolfmother is worth the exception. They have only one album released in 2005 that was equally ground breaking and derivative. Then turmoil hit and they supposedly broke up. However, co-founder Andrew Stockdale is back with a new lineup and is set to release a new album. As the real driving force behind the Wolfmother sound I expect nothing less than another masterpiece and am excited for the release. You can already pre-order Cosmic Egg on iTunes.

Listen to "New Moon Rising" onMySpace

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Mindy Smith - Stupid Love

The best way to understand the present state of Mindy Smith's career is to put that career in the context of how it really began. Mindy Smith was included in an all-star tribute album to Dolly Parton, Just Because I'm a Woman (Sugar Hill, 2003). However, in 2003 Smith was no All-Star, but there she was on an album with Allison Krauss, Emmylou Harris, Kasey Chambers, Shelby Lynne and Norah Jones among others. Dolly Parton was so impressed with her cover of "Jolene" that she sang on the version recorded for Mindy Smith's 2004 debut album. In fact,the two of them remain close Friends. Fast forward to 2009, and you see a Mindy Smith taking a step away from those rootsy and acoustic beginnings and embracing a more diverse sound, and potentially a wider audience.

Widening your appeal can be a tricky proposition, often to create breadth an artist will sacrifice depth. Fortunately, there is nothing shallow about Stupid Love. There is a theme to the album. Love is tough and involves heartache and disappointment. However, there is enough good to make it worthwhile. Maybe that is why love is stupid. There is more heartache than happiness for humans when it comes to love. Is it really worthwhile? Is it worth all the heartache we go through in the search for true love? When you look at human behavior the answer seems to be yes. Mindy Smith seems to have noticed this also, and to her it seems to be stupid. How ironic! The fact that we are stupid enough to look for true love makes it all the more satisfying when we find it. It is the depth of her music that ha always made me connect with it. On Stupid Love I see a Mindy Smith that has widened her appeal in a way that will not weaken her connection with her existing fan base.

This review also appears on Twangville

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Brendan Benson Power Pop Genius

Brendan Benson has taken a break from his side project ith Jack White, The Racoteurs. He is back to doing what he does best, making great Power Pop. Hooks and tunes you can listen to0 over and over. My Old, Familiar Freind is certainly familiar territory for this under appreciated Indie star.

Check out his letterman performance from earlier this week:

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Radney Foster New Album

REVIVAL will be releasing on September 1st. I am a huge Radney Foster fan and this promises to be a huge release for him. Following on the death of his father, I have no doubt this will be an emotionally charged release:

Friday, August 14, 2009

Grant Langston - Stand Up Man

When I first looked at the CD and saw a song called “Shiner Bock and Vicodin” I thought it had possibilities. Then I listened to the song, which featured a naked guy in a wedding, and knew that Stand Up Man couldn’t miss. Then I remembered that Grant Langston was the guy who dared to do a Country cover of “Fat Bottom Girls” and even made it work. Talk about an oddity, a Honky Tonk Freddie Mercury song sounds more like a bad porno, but it is hilarious. “Burt Reynolds Movie Brawl” is a tongue in cheek reference to the obligatory donnybrook that always seemed to be included in Reynold's movies. In that song Langston referred to, “The guy in the L. S. U. T-shirt that looks just like Terry Bradshaw” and I almost drove my car in a ditch. Langston also provides a fresh perspective on aging in “The King of Sunset Hills,” which is the story of man who finds renewed vigor when he is sent to a retirement home as a “Thoroughbred champ turned out to stud… The doctors they cannot believe their eyes, he’s lost 14 pounds and his prostate’s the normal size.”

If humor was all there was, Stand Up Man would fall short. Fortunately there is so much more. The melodies and musicianship are great and there is a mix of traditional country and modern roadhouse sounds. I highly recommend this CD, but I don’t recommend going naked to weddings. Do us all a favor and save the nudity for the honeymoon.

Check out the title cut.

This review also appears on Twangville