Lucero have a new album, All A Man Should Do, coming out on September 18th. On August 13 they leaked a song from it. I have some complaints about the mixing of, and the reverb upon, the vocals but the song itself. God damn is it nice….
Right out of the gate I’m going to just give you some Two Cow Garage as a celebration of the freedom granted to almost everyone by SCOCTUS (next up is recognition of polygamous marriage). I’ve posted what I think about the decision on FB and won’t belabor the point here, so let’s all just enjoy “Let The Boys Be Girls” for a minute…
Someone with way more CDO (That’s OCD in alphabetical order, the way it should be) created a set chronological playlists of 90’s alt/indie. Taken together these things are a 500+ minute pill to swallow! I once tried to just a top 100, arranged in some chronological order, for alt country and wanted to stab myself in the eyes before I was done. The dedication it takes to make an 800 track playlist is something I don’t have. I’m seriously not entirely sure whether I should be afraid, have a ton of respect, or recommend a good shrink! Whichever it is I am grateful to have the resource, even if I’m not sure I’ll put 500 hours in to completing. Thanks @naxuu, this is pretty cool!
And since this is a holiday weekend and none of you want to spend your time reading what I thought was cool on the web this week, I am closing this, admittedly short, Around The Web with something that was cool six years ago. I mentioned I found some old mix tape archives lying around, well this is one from the Lucero Message Board, circa 2009, our little Summer Mix Tape. It was certainly a good one!
The Fox Hunt – Better Than This (Lucero Cover)
“The boys recorded this for the long overdue Lucero tribute album..I heard them play this version when they were here playing Surf Bar on Folly Beach…took some cajoling but I got MK to send me the mp3…here it is.” – JacksonDavis
Lucero – Live 1/4/2002 – American Girl
“Sticking with the 4th of July theme. Just for fun.” – Boston Twang
Deer Tick – Born on Flag Day – Houston, TX
“The first song that jumped out at me on the new record. Haven’t decided what I think of the new record yet but I like this song.” – Plank10
Cory Branan – Ardent Studios recording – Karen’s Song
“I had never heard this prior to hearing it on the streaming file released by Rachel and The City when he was in studio earlier this year…cannot wait for his new album…he and Snodgrass kicked major ass in ATL and Savannah.” – JacksonDavis…thanks to Down South for the editing Wink
Ha Ha Tonka – Novel Sounds of The Nouveau South – Close Every Valve to Your Bleeding Heart
“Roaring out of the Ozarks with a bottle in one hand and a bible in the other” – ColoradoAlan
William Elliott Whitmore – Animals In The Dark – Old Devils
“My current favourite tune from my favourite album of the year to date.” – JacksonDavis
Hoots & Hellmouth – The Holy Open Secret – What Good Are Plowshares If We Use Them Like Swords
“There is something about this band I find deeply interesting. I can’t quite put my finger on it but whatever it is this song has it.” – Autopsy IV
The Only Sons – Steel Hearts – Lay Back Down
“This song is eerily relevant for a friends situation right now..” – ColoradoAlan
The Evening Rig – Is Doin’ Stuff – Goddamn, I Could Use A Drink
“If you haven’t listened to these guys yet, you probably should.” – algwalcz
Jon Snodgrass w/ Cory Branan – Alone and Distanced
“Too bad this isn’t being released on CD or digital download…but…I was able to pry this from someone who had been way late in getting Season 5 of The Wire back to me Cool” – JacksonDavis”
Two Cow Garage – Humble Narrator – Speaking in Cursive
“I’ve had this CD for a while but just REALLY started to listen to it, and this song was the first one I kept repeating. ” The sun has a way of making us pay for our revelry filled nights” Amen Brother.” – Hecticeyes
Chad Rex & The Victorstands – Songs to Fix Angels – Build a Rocket
“I only recently realized how good Chad Rex is. Besides, it’s the time of year for rockets.” – Boston Twang
Flogging Molly – Swagger – Salty Dog
“Irish punk rock is great and good for hanging out in the summer listening to full blast.” – Lennon Medvick
Michael Dean Damron – Father’s Day – Angels Fly Up
“It seems like I am always pimping this guy’s music and my work isn’t done until he’s got a platinum award on his wall…or something like that. Father’s Day is a strong contender for the Best of ’09 as far as I’m concerned. I can’t really pinpoint why this song means so much to me, but it affects me somewhere in the guts.” – Bone Machine
Austin Lucas – The Common Cold – Kith and Kin
“If you’ve only heard Austin’s new album, definitely check out The Common Cold. Yay for the upcoming tour with Two Cow!” – TheOtherBrit
The Lemonheads – Varshons – Waitin Around to Die
“Evan Dando revisits a Townes Van Zandt classic” – ColoradoAlan
Cheap Trick – The Latest – Sick Man Of Europe
“Of all the music from my childhood, Cheap Trick are the band that I still enjoy with the intensity of my youth. It’s good to know that they’re still out there plugging away and have a catalog much richer than the classic rock staples (I Want You To Want Me, Surrender, The Flame…). This tune is from their new one, lovingly entitled The Latest, and is further proof that Robin Zander has one of the finer voices in rock some 35 years into his career.” – Bone Machine
The Dexateens – Singlewide – Can You Whoop It
“If you like the Dexateens, keep an eye out for Arkadelphia, Lee Bains III’s new band. They’ve even more amazing!” – TheOtherBrit
Trampled by Turtles – Duluth – Empire
“These guys are one of my favorite bands that I’ve discovered because they were a Lucero opener. Go see them live if you get the chance.” Boston Twang
Matthew Dean Herman – Blackbird – Blackbird
“Fantastic debut album produced by Evan Phillips of The Whipsaws. RIYL: Drive-By Truckers” – Autopsy IV
Lyle Lovette – I Love Everybody – Fat Babies
“I’ve been on a Lyle Lovette kick lately. “I don’t like hippies and I don’t like cornbread.” I’m confused that he doesn’t like cornbread.” – Plank10
Ray LaMontagne – Gossip in the Grain – Let it Be Me
Submitted by corduroy
Uncle Tupelo – March 16-20 1994 – Moonshiner
Submitted by corduroy
Kingston Trio – We’ll Sing in The Sunshine
“A fun summertime sing-a-long…” – Nicole
Against Me! – As The Eternal Cowboy – You Look Like I Need Drink
“Against Me! has been my sound track all summer, and this is one of my favorites.” – Lennon Medvick
Our very own Wolf was on the radio with former 9B writer and editor Charles Hale this week and this is what it sounded like:
Benchmarks – “American Night” – American Night
Two Cow Garage – “Continental Distance” – Continental Distance
Benjamin Booker – “Have You Seen My Son?” – Benjamin Booker
Adam Faucett – “Rock Ain’t Gold” – Blind Water Finds Blind Water
Gaslight Anthem – “Lonesome Sound” – The ’59 Sound
Kill County – “Straight Six Ford” – The Year Of Getting By
Michael Dean Damron – “Dancing In The Moonlight” – Father’s Day
Shane Sweeney – “Motel Blues” – The Finding Time
Robert Chaney – “The Morning After” – Cracked Picture Frames
Tim Barry – “No News From the North” – Lost & Rootless
Jason Isbell – “Something More Than Free” – Something More Than Free
Doc Dailey & Magnolia Devil – “Waiting On You” – Catch the Presidents
Tyler Childers – “Charleston Girl” – Live At The Red Barn Vol. 1
Aaron Lee Tasjan – “Santa Monica & Vine” – The Thinking Man’s Filth
Arliss Nancy – “Front Seat” – Simple Machines
Langhorne Slim & The Law – “Past lives” – The Way We Move
Lilly Hiatt – “Jesus Would’ve Let Me Pick the Restaurant” – Royal Blue
The Killers – “Leave The Bourbon On The Shelf” – Sawdust
Against Me! – “F*** My Life 666” – Transgender Dysphoria Blues
Austin Lucas – “Alone in Memphis” – Stay Reckless
John Moreland – “Sad Baptist Rain” – High On Tulsa Heat
Barton Carroll – “Every Little Bit Hurts” – Avery County, I’m Bound To You
Jamestown Revival – “revival” – Utah
Matt Woods – “Beating Down My Door” – Matt Woods Manifesto
Cory Branan – “No Hit Wonder” – No Hit Wonder
Glossary – “At midnight” – How We Handle Our Midnights
Lucero – “Hearts On Fire” – Live DVD
Drive By Truckers – “Daddy’s Cup” – The Dirty South
Lee Bains III & the Glory Fires – “Dirt Track” – A Live Show
I’d be lying if I didn’t admit this was an excuse to post Charles’ podcast because it completely rocks and he’s pretty damn awesome. I know I miss his voice in the background of things around here. I’ve added his podcast to “Sites We Read” and hopefully you’ll all subscribe to it. There’s a lot worse things you could do with your time.
For those unfamiliar with this tour for the past 3-4 years when Lucero has a tour break Ben Nichols straps his acoustic to the back of his bike and hits the road for a string of dates with tattoo artist Oliver Peck and a rotating group of other folks. These are solo shows staged in smaller rooms with local openers and therefore tend to be more intimate than the normal Lucero performance. I’m a diehard long-term Lucero fan and have been to previous incarnations of this tour so this year I made my way to the dates in Columbus and Pittsburgh and thought it’d be worth writing up.
I hadn’t been to Columbus since high school so I had no idea what this venue or crowd would be like and to say they were great would be an understatement. The show was at the Rumba Cafe which was sold out well ahead of time much to the dislike of the people I saw trying to buy tickets at the door. Lydia Loveless opened the show with an around 40 minute solo acoustic set that consisted of songs from her albums and Boy Crazy EP as well as what I think was a new song. She’s always great live but it was interesting to hear completely stripped down versions of these songs. The surprising part for me was that a lot of the crowd didn’t seem to be familiar with her at all and I would have assumed there’d be a large crossover with their fan bases. Ben was introduced by Oliver and took the stage at 8pm which seemed unnaturally early but the crowd was already sufficiently lubricated so away we went. I’d be comfortable saying that this was the best solo show of his I have ever seen because not only did he sound great and seem to be having a great time but the crowd was very into the whole set, singing along and still respectful. I don’t keep set lists as i’m too busy enjoying the show to write anything down but aside from the usual Lucero live favorites we were treated to some rarities like the Red Forty song Outsiders, Mine Tonight and songs from Nichols solo concept record The Last Pale Light in the West. Lucero has a new record coming out in September so we were treated to two songs from that record the first of which being Went Looking for Warren Zevon’s Los Angeles that despite only being released the week before the crowd already knew the words to and Young Outlaws which is full of references to Ohio. The show was over by 10pm which allowed for more drinks and eventual street tacos so yeah it was a good night.
We moved on to Pittsburgh which was a city i’d never even been to previously. The venue called Club Cafe was even smaller than the night before and nice enough that I wondered if they knew what they were in for from the crowd. It turned out to be another fun but very respectful group and the only issue was that they ran out of Jameson before the night was over. The opening act was Paul Luc who arrived on his bike as well. He played a great acoustic set which given what i’ve seen online now seems to be unusual for him. Ben was up next and proceeded to run through a similar but still very different set from the night before which included the more “standard” live Lucero tracks and then also rarities like Hearts on Fire and closing with Joey Kneiser’s song Bruised Ribs. We were then treated to an encore or crowd cajoled last song of I Can’t Stand to Leave You which I don’t remember hearing live before often if at all.
In the end these are just fun fan friendly concerts with a chance to see and hear a performer in a way you’re not used to experiencing. The old Lucero website and message board were named LuceroFamily and that still holds true today. You meet good people, bond over the same music and have a great time. What else could you ask for?
Thanks to Jeff Scroggs for this video from Columbus
Last week Ash Nicole uploaded some videos of Ben Nichols doing a couple of songs from the new Lucero record. I really like these and can’t wait to hear them with the full band treatment. Below is “I Woke In New Orleans” and if you go to the link above you can see “Young Outlaws” as well. I may have my reservations about “Went Looking for Warren Zevon’s Los Angeles” but these songs blow away any doubts I had about the new record.
I woke up this morning to a new Lucero single off of the upcoming All A Man Should Do which is available for pre-order on their website, at least according to the information on the YouTube clip, I didn’t see a pre-order area that was obvious.
I’m a little put off by the effects on the vocals but everything else about this song is great. Rick’s work on this one is really good and brings his contribution to the forefront. I can’t wait to hear this whole album.
So I’ve been working a lot lately, and thinking about work. I’m too exhausted to put much thought into this post, so I’m not going to. I have a lot of feelings about work, and you can find a lot of them in this mixtape.
It has a lot of stuff I really love: starts out with a rare Lucero track, has some live Lee Bains III, good ol’ Tim Barry, and is (I believe) the Ninebullets debut of a little-known artist named Kanye West.
Give it a listen and let me know what you like to have in your ears at work. For me it’s audiobooks, rock operas, and the constant needling of my own self-doubt.
I want to get more into making mixtapes for folks, and maybe podcasting in the manner of our very own Charles Hale’s Ajax Diner Book Club. So here’s a taste of what I bring to the table, pun from mixing metaphors neither intended nor appreciated.
Hole Dozer Mixtape Track Listing
1. “The Bridge” – Lucero
2. “Last Of The Working Slobs” – The Von Erichs
3. “Saturday Night – Two Cow Garage
4. “Mutiny” – William Elliot Whitmore
5. “Save Your Money for the Weekend” – Glossary
6. “Spaceship” – Kanye West (feat. GLC & Consequence)
7. “Ne’er Do Wells” – Audra Mae
8. “Sweat & Cigarettes” – John Moreland
9. “Moonshiner” – SCORPIOS
10. “Avoiding Catatonic Surrender” – Tim Barry
11. “Br00tal” – Drag The River
12. “A Company Town” – Matt Woods
13. “Five O’Clock World” – The Vogues
14. “Four Score And Seven” – Titus Andronicus
15. “Dirt Track (Live on WFMU)” – Lee Bains III & The Glory Fires
Young Valley is the perfect example of why you always show up for the opener. Headed to my number who-knows Lucero show, I got to the venue (Brewsky’s in Hattiesburg, Mississippi) a few minutes after ate, and heard the band through the walls: there was a classic country guitar-walking beat, someone name-dropped Jesus Christ, and I heard the words ‘Holy Ghost’ in the chorus…this did not sound like your standard Lucero opening band. Tuning his guitar and with his eyes on his shoes, lead singer Zach Lovett reminded the audience with some sincerity to, “Say your prayers, folks.” I will admit that I started to get a little nervous.
The band started in on their next song, though, and I was blown away. Zach Lovett sings about Heaven and Hell with equal ease, alternating the goofy hip-shakes of a youth pastor as he strums his acoustic guitar with the stomping and howling of a disgraced revival preacher. His twin brother Dylan is on lead guitar and seemed at first to follow the Brian Venable model of shredder, equal parts skill, subdued nature, and beard. But Dylan writes and sings several of his own songs as well, and though his voice doesn’t have his brother’s power it possesses a sweet tone and earnestness that is just as striking.
Young Valley kept the attention of the boys from Lucero for the entirety of their set, and at the end of the show Ben Nichols used his pulpit to espouse their virtures: “We already bought three copies of their CD…y’all already own our shit. Go buy their shit! They’re the best opening band I’ve seen in a long time.” [Author’s Note: I bought the record because they were badass, not because Ben Nichols told me to]
Listening to the record, No Filter, on the long drive back to Louisiana was an absolute treat. The band has roots in a lot of older music, when the lines between rock’n’roll, country, and blues were much thinner. These boys are from Jackson, Mississippi and proud of it. But this is by no means a genre record: it dances from the Bakersfield sound of “The Way It Has To Be” to the much more modern vibe of “The Fly” with ease. Each of the Lovett brothers has their vocal prowess and songwriting talent on display over these thirteen tracks, and the band can stay tightly together or cut loose with the best of them. It has everything you could want from a debut album: pedal steel, piano, sad acoustic numbers, stomp-worthy rock and roll, heartache, and the Devil.
This is the time to start listening to a band, when you can watch them grow, cheer them on, and have a beer with them after the show. If No Filter is any indication, the sky is the limit for Young Valley.
Kierston White “big star” from Don’t Write Love Songs
Micah Schnabel “Not The Boy You Used To Be” from Not The Boy You Used To Be
John Moreland “You Don’t Care for Me Enough to Cry” from High On Tulsa Heat
Ty Segall “The singer” from Manipulator
Blue Blood “The Kids Are The City” from This Is The Life
The Glands “Straight down” from The Glands
REM “Turn You Inside Out” from Green
Blue Blood “Birth Right” from This Is The Life
Cafeteria “Drunk” from Knee Deep
Austin Lucas “Alone In Memphis” from Stay Reckless
JD McPherson “head over heels” from Let the Good Times Roll
Tom Petty “The Apartment Song” from Full Moon Fever
Adam Faucett “Benton” from Blind Water Finds Blind Water
Aimee Mann “Driving Sideways” from Bachelor No 2
Sam & Dave “Can’t You Find Another Way” from The Best Of Sam & Dave
Possessed By Paul James “Songs We Used to Sing” from There Will Be Nights When I’m Lonely
Hayes Carll “Down the Road Tonight” from Little Rock
4H Royalty “Rubber City Girl” from Colossalalia
Sam Cooke “You send me” from The Best of Sam Cooke
American Aquarium “Katherine Belle” from Dances For The Lonely
McDougall “On the Mend” from McDougall
Ike and Tina Turner “Get You When I Want You” from Workin’ Together
Todd Snider “Lookin’ for a Job” from The Devil You Know
Glossary “Save Your Money for the Weekend” from Feral Fire
Booker T. Jones “The Bronx” from Road From Memphis
Otis Gibbs “Damn Me” from Grandpa Walked a Picketline
Lucero “The Last Song” from Tennessee
Charlie Parr “Empty Out Your Pockets” from Stumpjumper
Yes, Rick and Roy from Lucero. No it’s not Alt-Country, in fact it couldn’t be further from Alt-Country. I managed to catch up with both Rick and Roy while they were in Houston on tour this past month with Lucero, and I got a better perspective of how this duo went from their Lucero gig to this new project.
These overly talented gentlemen spend a great deal of time touring with Lucero but managed to break away from their busy schedules and spend some time messing around at Archer Records. The result is an electronic meshing of sounds that’s equal parts catchy, dramatic, and trance-inducing. According to both Rick and Roy they had some down time. Fear not, this does not mean that Lucero is taking a break in fact they will be stepping into the recording studio during April to lay down a new album. You should read “down time” as sitting on a bus for long hours, weekends at home in Memphis, and being constantly obsessed with working on something new related to music. Rick had been doing a bit of soundtrack work for Ward Archer, including the Mud soundtrack and music to accompany Charly the City Mouse Fasano’s Retrospect/ed single and Rick asked Roy over to assist. From these sessions and the related experimentation, the two were asked to put together an EP of their electronic music. The EP turned into a full album, produced by Daniel Lynn, that Roy said they kept adding to and fiddling with, until eventually it was done, and by done he includes that there are still tons of tracks that didn’t even make it to the record, but hinted they will be released in time.
As I listen to Superfluidity I can’t help but think that some of the songs have sounds that are reminiscent to music that pre-date my own age, and I brought this up. According to both Rick and Roy there were no intentions or influences of 70’s or 80’s music in a planned way, but rather they would play around with the sounds they were creating and found that they fit best. Rick personally feels it echoes more of a 70’s era because to him that’s where the instrumental synth records he most loved stemmed from. That is the beauty of this album, there’s no one reflected idea, there’s no one theme, and there’s no definition. With each listen I imagine this album as an accompaniment to other art forms, as if it should be used as the salt to add flavor to the blandness of life. It sounds like beautiful, sometimes haunting, and also at other times chaotic layers of sounds that can transcend the decades and easily be molded into any scenario. Rick said “It’s not as deliberately planned as you think, it wasn’t intentional, it wasn’t ignored it was just a natural process of the creative experience.” I could not think of a better way to describe just how seamless it sounds.
When I asked about the creative process of Superfluidity, it’s no secret that Roy Berry can create an entire electronica album on his laptop from home with his previous experiments in music such as his work with Overjoid. I’ll let you do the google searching and fall down the path of no internet return to Mr. Berry’s non-Lucero music history. Rick refers to himself as more of a song guy, taking the music and inserting a melody. The question then became if this record was created over a length of time, until it felt completed rather than under a deadline, and if it was created with no real agenda or written music, how would this be replicated in a live setting? Rick and Roy both agreed that it simply must, but it would ideally include a stage set up of them improving music just as they did in the studio during creation. The concept of this being an ever evolving project and never quite the same or a repeating occurrence simply excites me like a kid on Christmas morning. Creating an experience for fans that will be different yet of equal caliber is a very forward thinking concept, and I can only imagine frightening for an artist to do. I’m excited to see the future that Superflidity will kick-start for Rick and Roy, and eagerly await the next experimental surprise from them.
Superfluidity is set to be released on April 4th, but you may pre-order the album now at Archer Records’ website. There will be a limited vinyl LP pressing autographed by Rick and Roy, I recommend rushing on over to pre-order that HERE.