“I’ve heard a lot of good country music lately” is a statement I don’t make often, but I’m making it now.
From Nashville via LA Brian Wright released Rattle Their Chains today. On it he’s captured the LA troubadour what-caught-the-holy-spirit sound he’s been beating around the last few years that Sugar Hill Records has been kind enough to record for us.
The SwampFox, old Tony Joe White hisself, the author of "Polk Salad Annie" of Elvis “was a hero to most but never meant shit to me” Presley fame, and an artist so underrated that he makes JJ Cale seem like a man who got the praise he deserved releases his 33rd(!) album in the last 50(!) years this month and so far it sounds pretty good…
Country/gospel game changer Valerie June has been plowing through a world tour playing her "organic moonshine roots music" with acts like Jake Bugg in places like the Montreux Jazz Festival, and David Letterman, and will grace our little country town (aka Ballard) with her Tennessee wail on Sunday at the Tractor Tavern. Y'all should show up.
I bring all this up because I got an email the other day from Levi Fuller (yeah, Ball Of Wax dude) and he'll be releasing a new solo EP this month as well. Now, I’ve been running from "John the Revelator" remakes since Blind Willie Johnson was knee-high to a small fry, but I’m glad I didn’t in this case and you shouldn’t neither.
On the four-song EP called Social Music, Levi Fuller and the Library chose three traditionals and a Foghorns song (the blissfully pickled "80 Proof") to get in tune to and ended up with a decent recording. It'd be nice to hear some more original material from Levi with this backing band consisting of Christopher Williams on drums and Johnathan Wooster on bass, but this EP is so fun that it'll do for now. Their electric version of "John The Revelator" clocks in at ¾ time and comes across like DJ Screw got a hold of a box of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds records. Word is they do plan on putting a full album together soon.
Levi Fuller and the Library play their EP release party with Yucca Mountain and The Foghorns (also releasing a new EP) at Conor Byrne Sept. 28.