LILLY HIATT – ROYAL BLUE

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People remember the ’90’s as grungy, and druggy; self-loathing, and insecure. We all wore flannel and did heroin while listening to Soundgarden. It was pretty great, except for the having to listen to Soundgarden part. There was another side to the ’90’s. Unequaled prosperity, homegrown terrorism, and the worst thing our President did was get blow jobs in the Oval Office.

There was also Lillith Fair. A female artist led traveling festival created in response to the male dominated Lollapalloza. Names like Sarah McLachlan, Paula Cole, The Breeders, PJ Harvey, and Liz Phair may not have been as well known as Pearl Jam or Nirvana, but they were damn sure as well known at the time as Alice In Chains or Mudhoney. Musical artistry wasn’t gender specific and women didn’t feel the need to degrade (empower?) themselves to succeed. The music was all that mattered. It was a different time.

If we had Lilith Fair today there is no doubt Lilly Hiatt and her ridiculously good band would be invited to perform. Hiatt’s exceptional second album Royal Blue is not a Country Music album. Hiatt blends influences uncommon in the typical folk/punk/country roots of so much Americana music we know and love. She creates something amazingly fresh and new. Royal Blue sounds like a lost ’90’s alternative rock treasure brimming with confidence, sultriness, and focused sense of purpose.

It may be Lilly Hiatt’s name on Royal Blue but it is very much a “band album”. The band’s sense of space and understated urgency forms the perfect backdrop for Hiatt’s subtle melodies and piercing lyrics. Seeing her live, my friend in the gorilla mask who had never heard them before said, “I love that drummer and his surfer beat!” Drunk gorilla was right. Hiatt and her band were tight. As tight as Houston and humidity.

Embracing influences from Lucinda Williams, Tom Petty, Pixies, and The Cure; Lilly blossoms into her own as an artist with no rules. I was fortunate enough to meet her and she’s a sweet Lady. But I can’t help but think she would say if she had the chance, “Hey, I’m an artist and I love you and I appreciate you if you are willing to follow me on my artistic journey, but if you want to pigeon hole me into something you THINK I should be…well…Fuck you”…We are with you Lilly. See you next time. You bring the songs and fun, we’ll bring the gorilla and patchouli. Essential Listening.
Lilly Hiatt is Rock/Country/Alt/Indie

Royal Blue by Lilly Hiatt is Essential Listening.

 

Heart Attack

I Don’t Do Those Things Anymore

 

You can pick up this stupendousness on Amazon and iTunes. Check her out  on FB.

 

Introduction to Scott Fuchs

Scot might kill me for adding this pic - RSV
Scot might kill me for adding this pic – RSV

It all started with The Dirty South. From the first chord of “Where the Devil Don’t Stay” all the way through “Goddamn Lonely Love”, Drive By Truckers reintroduced me to a type of music I hadn’t heard since I was a little kid listening to Skynyrd on KBER 101, Salt Lake’s Best Classic Rock.

Work and divorce led me to Texas. I met this lady from Little Rock and was soon making a weekly trip to the Natural State. Needing some music for the drive I stopped into a record store outside of Dallas that no longer exists. I bought 3 CD’s, the latest from Old 97’s because they were from Dallas, Queens of the Stone Age Lullabies to Paralyze and Drive By Truckers The Dirty South because I’d read an article that said they were good and the cover art was fantastic.

I immediately dug deeper into DBT’s catalog after becoming obsessed with The Dirty South. Southern Rock Opera had gotten the most press back then and it is, undoubtedly, great. But Decoration Day remains by favorite DBT record after all these years. “My Sweet Annette”, “Outfit”, “When the Pin hits the Shell”. Three stellar songwriters all at the top of their game. It was all just perfect.

My desire to discover anything and everything I could online about my new favorite band lead me to stumble upon ninebullets.net. It is not an understatement for me to say ninebullets changed my life. My eyes were opened to so much great music that I simply never would have discovered had it not been for 9B and, later, Nine Bullets Radio on wmnf.org in Tampa. If I was forced to list my top ten favorite musical artists I’m very sure at least seven of them I wouldn’t have known about them without ninebullets.net.

My musical tastes are similar to many that read the site and listen to the radio show: Lucero, John Moreland, American Aquarium, Matt Woods, Scott H. Biram and so many more are all artists I love. I also unabashedly adore Arctic Monkeys, Queens of the Stone Age, and The Hold Steady, but those aren’t the type of reviews I will offer on 9B. I am cognizant of the mission of the site and won’t let my alternative/indie rock tendencies seep in too often.

Before signing off for now I’d like to sincerely thank RomeoSidVicious for letting me contribute to 9B. I humbled and thankful. And of course, the biggest thanks of all to Autopsy IV for creating 9B. I’m not sure, AIV, you had any idea how big this whole thing would get when you created it years ago but I know I’ve met a lot of people, made some good friends, and seen a lot of killer shows I never would have had I not bought a Drive By Truckers CD on a whim all those years ago.