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  1. #1
    very clever with maracas Davey's Avatar
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    Let's talk some Americana soup

    Been a while since we've had a good ol' Americana lovefest around here, so who's been clanging your bell lately? Ya know, stuff like that new freak-folkie Devendra Banhart in my player right now, going on about his good friend Will, who sings like good ol' John Mayall on that classic Goin' back to California. And what does "tit smoking in the temple of artesan mimicry" really mean? And isn't "Rejoicing In The Hands" just a great song?

    I'm kind of an alt-country and folk guy so don't listen to much new country, so with that proviso out of the way, one of my favorites of modern times is Gillian Welch. She and her husband/partner David Rawlings did a very good one a few years ago called "Time (the Revelator)" that's destined to be a modern classic in the loosely defined country folk genre, and very nice sounding too. Not really quite what I call country, but recorded simply, live in the studio with just a couple of Neumann mikes, Gillian and David, banjo and vintage acoustic guitars, and a lot of good music. Gillian describes the album, "As opposed to little tiny folk songs, they're really tiny rock songs performed in an acoustic setting. In our heads we went electric without changing instruments."

    Also Richard Buckner is a big favorite along those same country folk lines. "Bloomed" is outstanding, along with some of his newer stuff too. The 1999 Rykodisc reissue has some nice bonus tracks, but it is kind of pumped up unfortunately.

    And Califone has a lot of country folk leanings, especially on the excellent "Roomsound". A little more eclectic, for sure, but really typifies what I like in music.

    And the Walkabouts. They did an album of covers in the mid 90s called "Satisfied Mind" that is outstanding, both musically and sonically. Real country. Even goes back to grab the 1927 Carter Family classic "The Storms Are On the Ocean" and make it a modern, moody classic. Beautiful album. I just recently picked up their "Ended Up A Stranger" from 2002 and it's really nice. Shouldn't have waited so long. Carla, as always, is a gem of a singer. Kinda wish she sang the lead even more often. The band is hot. The music is great. Even the sound is pretty nice, with Phil Brown producing and mixing along with the band, and Denis Blackham mastering. Brown and Blackham are a pretty good team. I have some others they've worked on like the Talk Talk reissue of "Spirit of Eden" that sounds great. Just honest and natural, without the fake pizzaz that wrecks a lot of CDs.

    Lots more. That debut by Mary Gauthier called "Mercy Now" is really good. Kind of a Lucinda Williams bent at times, but still her own woman. Real emotional delivery. Made quite a few best of the year lists. Way too compressed like most modern stuff, but what can ya do? And of course, Lucinda is the real thing, anything by her is choice. I'm partial to the self-titled one from the end of the 80s, but "Car Wheels" from the mid 90s is a certified classic.

    Over The Rhine is another one that gets some good press hereabouts. A couple years ago they put out a sprawling 2-CD (or gatefold LP) epic with both acoustic and electric sections called "Ohio" that was easily one of the best of 2003. Again not entirely country, but Karin Bergquist has such a wonderfully expressive voice and you won't find music and lyrics much more compelling than this. Think maybe something along the lines of Fleetwood Mac meets Gram Parsons (or maybe Whiskeytown covering Gram Parsons like they did on that great tribute album from a few years ago that Emmylou Harris put together called "The Return of the Grievous Angel"). The lush sound is a little reminiscent of the Cowboy Junkies or Blue Rodeo. Not as overtly pop sounding as the Fleetwood Mac reference would suggest (nor as dreamy and hedonistic either). Think more "Tusk" than something like "Rumours". Somewhat spiritual. Nicely recorded by Paul Mahern at Echo Park in Bloomington, Indiana on 2" analog tape.

    And speaking of Emmylou Harris, the one she did with Daniel Lanois in the mid 90s called "Wrecking Ball" is outstanding. Man, it would be fun to discover another record like that one. My laser has dug around in those pits quite a few times.

    Anyhoot, been kind of a slow alt-country and folk year for me so far. That Deadstring Brothers record was some good ol shiz, but it is kind of old sounding with a lot of the sound of The Band and Stones. Love the Willard Grant Conspiracy, but they've done it before. The top album on the charts at the americana.uk site is some great power pop from Daniel Wylie "The High Cost of Happiness" they rated 10 out of 10. Guess that says something, eh? Like, where's all the great country music?

    Just ordered the new Woven Hand record a few days ago. Supposed to be very good, maybe his best. So been playing a bunch of Woven Hand and 16 Horsepower. But I'm open to suggestions .... new Nina Nastasia in a couple weeks! That one is big on my calendar, along with the highly anticipated new Califone. Yeah, that should get my twig shaking and rattling

  2. #2
    If you can't run-walk. Bernd's Avatar
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    It's locked it's un-locked it's closed it's open
    I am dizzy.
    Anyway great thread and it read perfectley (in)sane as usual.
    If you like the Mercy Now disc check out Mary Gauthiers 02 release Filth and Fire. I am having my first exposure right now to the new Anne McCue release, Koala Motel. Good stuff. Bit like an australian Lucinda Williams.

    Peace

    Bernd
    Last edited by Bernd; 09-07-2006 at 09:11 AM.
    "Let The Earth Bear Witness."

  3. #3
    Forum Regular nobody's Avatar
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    Anybody else dig Old Crow Medicine Show?

    I've listened to their release from last year pretty extensively.

    This year, I've found more country where I'd leave the alt off of.

    The last Johnny Cash and the latest Willie Nelson are the two standouts for me.

  4. #4
    Color me gone... Resident Loser's Avatar
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    Tell us...

    Quote Originally Posted by Bernd
    ...I am dizzy...
    ...something we don't already know...;-p

    ...haven't had the opportunity to listen yet, but I bought "The Little Willies" this past weekend based purely on the snippets of material @ the Norah Jones site...With songwriters such as Hank Williams, Kris Kristofferson, Willie Nelson, Fred Rose, Lieber and Stoller...I figure I can't go too wrong...

    jimHJJ(...and what was with the turnstyle-state of this thread anywho?...)
    Hello, I'm a misanthrope...don't ask me why, just take a good look around.

    "Men would rather believe than know" -Sociobiology: The New Synthesis by Edward O. Wilson

    "The great masses of the people...will more easily fall victims to a great lie than to a small one" -Adolph Hitler

    "We are never deceived, we deceive ourselves" -Goethe

    If you repeat a lie often enough, some will believe it to be the truth...

  5. #5
    very clever with maracas Davey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bernd
    It's locked it's un-locked it's closed it's open
    I am dizzy.
    Yeah, no idea what happened. It was locked as soon as I posted it, so made another thread wondering what I had done wrong today, but then realized there is a control that allows me to unlock it myself, so did that and then deleted the other thread. Never saw that option before, but seem to have just added the gallery link to the avatar area as well. So, anyone have any pictures uploaded worth looking at?

  6. #6
    Indifferentist Slosh's Avatar
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    Talk is cheap.

    Hey, check out this new Decemberists song and tell me it doesn't remind you of R.E.M.
    [Code]http://www.yousendit.com/transfer.php?action=download&ufid=05157BA77146C5B6[/Code]
    Can hardly wait for its release next month so I don't have to put up with the crappy mp3 sonics anymore.
    Originally Posted by Troy: She has that same kind of cleft-pallet, slightly retarded way of singing that so many other people find endearing.


  7. #7
    very clever with maracas Davey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slosh
    ... remind you of R.E.M.
    And that is supposed to be a good thing?



    Hey Yo, will listen later and tell you how much the world doesn't need another whiney Stipe wannabe

    Juzza kidding, although I did hear one or two of those Morrissey covers Meloy did on his solo gig and they were only half bad, but he's a better ringer for Moz than Mikey.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey
    Been a while since we've had a good ol' Americana lovefest around here, so who's been clanging your bell lately? Ya know, stuff like that new freak-folkie Devendra Banhart in my player right now, going on about his good friend Will, who sings like good ol' John Mayall on that classic Goin' back to California. And what does "tit smoking in the temple of artesan mimicry" really mean? And isn't "Rejoicing In The Hands" just a great song?

    I'm kind of an alt-country and folk guy so don't listen to much new country, so with that proviso out of the way, one of my favorites of modern times is Gillian Welch. She and her husband/partner David Rawlings did a very good one a few years ago called "Time (the Revelator)" that's destined to be a modern classic in the loosely defined country folk genre, and very nice sounding too. Not really quite what I call country, but recorded simply, live in the studio with just a couple of Neumann mikes, Gillian and David, banjo and vintage acoustic guitars, and a lot of good music. Gillian describes the album, "As opposed to little tiny folk songs, they're really tiny rock songs performed in an acoustic setting. In our heads we went electric without changing instruments."

    Also Richard Buckner is a big favorite along those same country folk lines. "Bloomed" is outstanding, along with some of his newer stuff too. The 1999 Rykodisc reissue has some nice bonus tracks, but it is kind of pumped up unfortunately.

    And Califone has a lot of country folk leanings, especially on the excellent "Roomsound". A little more eclectic, for sure, but really typifies what I like in music.

    And the Walkabouts. They did an album of covers in the mid 90s called "Satisfied Mind" that is outstanding, both musically and sonically. Real country. Even goes back to grab the 1927 Carter Family classic "The Storms Are On the Ocean" and make it a modern, moody classic. Beautiful album. I just recently picked up their "Ended Up A Stranger" from 2002 and it's really nice. Shouldn't have waited so long. Carla, as always, is a gem of a singer. Kinda wish she sang the lead even more often. The band is hot. The music is great. Even the sound is pretty nice, with Phil Brown producing and mixing along with the band, and Denis Blackham mastering. Brown and Blackham are a pretty good team. I have some others they've worked on like the Talk Talk reissue of "Spirit of Eden" that sounds great. Just honest and natural, without the fake pizzaz that wrecks a lot of CDs.

    Lots more. That debut by Mary Gauthier called "Mercy Now" is really good. Kind of a Lucinda Williams bent at times, but still her own woman. Real emotional delivery. Made quite a few best of the year lists. Way too compressed like most modern stuff, but what can ya do? And of course, Lucinda is the real thing, anything by her is choice. I'm partial to the self-titled one from the end of the 80s, but "Car Wheels" from the mid 90s is a certified classic.

    Over The Rhine is another one that gets some good press hereabouts. A couple years ago they put out a sprawling 2-CD (or gatefold LP) epic with both acoustic and electric sections called "Ohio" that was easily one of the best of 2003. Again not entirely country, but Karin Bergquist has such a wonderfully expressive voice and you won't find music and lyrics much more compelling than this. Think maybe something along the lines of Fleetwood Mac meets Gram Parsons (or maybe Whiskeytown covering Gram Parsons like they did on that great tribute album from a few years ago that Emmylou Harris put together called "The Return of the Grievous Angel"). The lush sound is a little reminiscent of the Cowboy Junkies or Blue Rodeo. Not as overtly pop sounding as the Fleetwood Mac reference would suggest (nor as dreamy and hedonistic either). Think more "Tusk" than something like "Rumours". Somewhat spiritual. Nicely recorded by Paul Mahern at Echo Park in Bloomington, Indiana on 2" analog tape.

    And speaking of Emmylou Harris, the one she did with Daniel Lanois in the mid 90s called "Wrecking Ball" is outstanding. Man, it would be fun to discover another record like that one. My laser has dug around in those pits quite a few times.

    Anyhoot, been kind of a slow alt-country and folk year for me so far. That Deadstring Brothers record was some good ol shiz, but it is kind of old sounding with a lot of the sound of The Band and Stones. Love the Willard Grant Conspiracy, but they've done it before. The top album on the charts at the americana.uk site is some great power pop from Daniel Wylie "The High Cost of Happiness" they rated 10 out of 10. Guess that says something, eh? Like, where's all the great country music?

    Just ordered the new Woven Hand record a few days ago. Supposed to be very good, maybe his best. So been playing a bunch of Woven Hand and 16 Horsepower. But I'm open to suggestions .... new Nina Nastasia in a couple weeks! That one is big on my calendar, along with the highly anticipated new Califone. Yeah, that should get my twig shaking and rattling

    Americana? I ain't heard two-thirds of these

  9. #9
    If you can't run-walk. Bernd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Resident Loser
    ...something we don't already know...;-p



    jimHJJ(...and what was with the turnstyle-state of this thread anywho?...)
    The culprit could have been the two or three ice cold Pilsner Urquell and a small dram of Glenmorangie. Just guessing though.

    The "Little Willies" is a fine album. Enjoy.

    And one to check out is the 2004 release from "The Blue Seeds" a self-titled 6 track ep. Very atmospheric. Like a soundtrack to a Film Noir roadmovie.

    Peace

    Bernd
    "Let The Earth Bear Witness."

  10. #10
    It's all about the music! Dave918's Avatar
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    Some old, some relatively new, all great and loaded in my iPod right now:

    Anna Coogan ~ Lonesome Cowboy Lullaby
    Bill & Bonnie Hearne ~ Watching Life Through A Windshield
    Greg Brown ~ Milk of the Moon
    David Olney ~ Migration
    Grey Delisle ~ Iron Flowers
    Jeffery Foucault ~ Stripping Cane
    Jessie Sykes ~ Oh, My Baby
    Lucy Kaplansky ~ The Red Thread
    Malcolm Holcombe ~ I Never Heard You Knockin'

    -dave
    "Wrong is right." ~ Thelonius Monk

  11. #11
    Indifferentist Slosh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heywood Djahblomie
    Why yes, I am an idiot. How did ya know?
    Nice screen name. What, was Fellatio Hornblower already taken?

    NP: Wilco - "Panthers"
    Originally Posted by Troy: She has that same kind of cleft-pallet, slightly retarded way of singing that so many other people find endearing.


  12. #12
    Indifferentist Slosh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey
    And that is supposed to be a good thing?



    Hey Yo, will listen later and tell you how much the world doesn't need another whiney Stipe wannabe

    Juzza kidding, although I did hear one or two of those Morrissey covers Meloy did on his solo gig and they were only half bad, but he's a better ringer for Moz than Mikey.
    The music reminds me of R.E.M., not the voices.

    NP: "Sweetbreads" - Andrew Bird's Bowl Of Fire Live In Chicago 6/02/01

    sweetbreads, I can taste what you were thinking

    sweetbreads, that's the taste of neurons blinking
    Originally Posted by Troy: She has that same kind of cleft-pallet, slightly retarded way of singing that so many other people find endearing.


  13. #13
    Man of the People Forums Moderator bobsticks's Avatar
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    Photos you say?

    This genre is a new one for me, but I've enjoyed several albums over the last month or so...

    Attachment 2046

    Attachment 2047

    Attachment 2048 and

    Attachment 2049
    Last edited by bobsticks; 10-04-2006 at 05:59 AM.
    So, I broke into the palace
    With a sponge and a rusty spanner
    She said : "Eh, I know you, and you cannot sing"
    I said : "That's nothing - you should hear me play piano"

  14. #14
    If you can't run-walk. Bernd's Avatar
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    A few I like:

    "Greg Brown - The Poets Game"

    "Lee Clayton - Naked Child"

    "Chris Knight - The Jealous Kind"

    "Romney Getty - Fill in your Gray"

    Peace

    Bernd
    "Let The Earth Bear Witness."

  15. #15
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    Smile Americana Roots Rock talk

    Nice little rambling there Dave, I still play your 10 years of alt country now and then which introduced me to all sorts of new sounds (at the time 2001) like Ryan Adams and Whiskeytown, Lucinda Williams, Son Volt and Giant Sand to name a few.

    Definitely with you on the Over The Rhine album, Karin Bergquist voice just washes over you, great sound too. Greg Brown does it for me with albums like Slant 6 Mind, Further In and Covenant but then again maybe more alt folk/blues than alt country. Or Sufjan Stevens with Illinoise and Greetings From Michigan and you canít go wrong with anything by Hem or Lambchop. Recent albums over the last couple of years by the likes of Clem Snide and Micah P Hinson shouldnít be overlooked either.

    Recently Iíve been enjoying the latest by the Drive by Truckers - A Blessing and a Curse for some Americana twang and the recent album by the excellent Mountain Goats called Get Lonely featuring the tortured John Darnielle with a much more mellow, less angst affair than his last. Great recording too like John is just sat there in your room.

    Havenít had chance to visit this place much over the last few months but itís always good to come back and see what youíve missed.

    Cheers
    Mike

  16. #16
    very clever with maracas Davey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike
    Nice little rambling there Dave, I still play your 10 years of alt country now and then which introduced me to all sorts of new sounds (at the time 2001) like Ryan Adams and Whiskeytown, Lucinda Williams, Son Volt and Giant Sand to name a few.
    Yeah, that comp did turn out kind of cool. Gave me a reason to revisit and rediscover a few artists as well. Speaking of Giant Sand, I didn't mention Howe's latest in the thread opener, but it's one of the years best for me. 'Sno Angel Like You. Little review at my site, but hard to really do it justice with my limited faculties. Not much twang, and backed by a gospel choir, but charming as ever in both music and words. Great sound too. Haven't been pulling it out enough lately, so I'm feeling an overdose of Howe and Giant Sand coming on this weekend

  17. #17
    Indifferentist Slosh's Avatar
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    Hey, just 'cause I'm a hell of a guy here's that Andrew Bird song I was talking about a little earlier. (22MB .flac) [Code]http://www.yousendit.com/transfer.php?action=download&ufid=0984D83A26DF070D[/Code]Good stuff!
    Originally Posted by Troy: She has that same kind of cleft-pallet, slightly retarded way of singing that so many other people find endearing.


  18. #18
    very clever with maracas Davey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Davey
    Just ordered the new Woven Hand record a few days ago. Supposed to be very good, maybe his best. So been playing a bunch of Woven Hand and 16 Horsepower. But I'm open to suggestions ....
    Wow, been playing this new Wovenhand for the last few days and really loving that dark and spiritual sound. Almost sinister at times. Don't know how many spins so far since it's so intoxicating, but probably a bunch, at least 5 or 6. Has much more of a Joy Division sound than in the past. But with that medieval sound that weaves throughout early Dead Can Dance music. Does sound like a full band, even though it's usually just his guitar and/or banjo and voice and an understated drummer, with piano/organ and/or strings on some of it. Another nice sounding one too, recorded, mixed and mastered by Robert Ferbrache up at his studio in Elktooth, CO. Be fun to have a recording studio and work with a lot of your favorite artists. I think Ferbrache used to play some lap-steel with 16 HP. Anyway, always a caution that it is very spiritual music, and his religious passion can get almost overwhelming at times, but he brings it all on this one, and I love it so far. After I ordered it a few days ago, I read a review or two that said it was too overbearing to listen all the way through, and I got a bit worried that maybe he went too far this time, but the first listen had me, and now it just gets better. The guy below withthe 9/10 review has it about right ...

    http://lostatsea.net/review.phtml?id...744f8781abcaad

    Now I need to find me a copy of that "Blush Music" disc that reworked the first s/t album for the film score. Supposed to be pretty amazing. Anyone seen the cover of the new Magnolia Electric Co. disc? Or heard it yet? Some Albini sessions along with some other engineers. Just picked up a new copy of the latest Neko Case for about $5 on amazon! Pays to wait

    Love this cover too ...


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