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When the Devil's LooseRecorded primarily in Water Valley, MS, When The Devil's Loose expands upon the stripped-down and haunting sound of A.A. Bondy's debut album, American Hearts. A full band now accompanies him on most tracks, lending a full, roomy sound to 10 songs of bluesy Americana carried along by Bondy's lived-in voice. When The Devil's Loose sounds almost from another era, whether it's a quiet, spooky twang (Oh The Vampyre), lullaby-like (On The Moon), inflected with old-time R&B (To The Morning), or colored with traces of '60s pop (the buoyant I Can See The Pines Are Dancing and the melancholy, ethereal cadence of When The Devil's Loose).1. When The Devil's Loose
2. Mightiest Of Guns
3. A Slow Parade
4. To The Morning
5. Oh The Vampyre
6. I Can See The Pines Are Dancing
7. False River
8. On The Moon
9. The Mercy Wheel
10. The Coal Hits The Fire$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
BelieversA.A. Bondy's newest release Believers follows-up 2009's When The Devil's Loose and his his third overall for Fat Possum Records. The album features ten new songs conjured during and between dreams, in bare rooms, and on the late night streets of America. Believers was recorded in the Spring of 2011 by Rob Schnapf at Mant/Kingsize Studios in Glassell Park, California. Musicians include Ben Lester (drums, piano, pedal steel) and Macy Taylor (bass).1. The Heart Is Willing
2. Down In The Fire (Lost Sea)
3. Skull & Roses
4. 123 Dupuy Street
5. Surfer King
8. The Twist
9. Rte. 28/Believers
10. Scenes From A Circus$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
American HeartsAfter his former band Verbena scored a deal with Capitol Records and put out two releases with them, Scott Bondy (aka A.A. Bondy) decided to call it quits and persue a solo career. Although American Hearts was recorded at a barn in upstate NY, it is hard not to recognize Bondy's influence from his home state of Alabama. Until now the album had not gotten proper distribution but still managed to land in the hands of several critics who welcomed it with praise. Bondy is now signed with Fat Possum Records who is re-releasing this solo/debut.
American Hearts is an unfolding tableau of hell on earth as seen by a weary set of eyes and described with a troubadour's guitar and an obsessive's mastery of form and musical history. - Pitchfork1. How Will You Meet Your End
2. There's a Reason
3. Black Rain, Black Rain
4. Rapture (Sweet Rapture)
5. American Hearts
6. No Man Shall
7. World Without End
8. Lovers' Waltz
9. Vice Rag
10. Killed Myself When I Was Young
11. Witness Blues
12. Of the Sea$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Dead FingersTaylor Hollingsworth and Kate Taylor singing together is a match made in heaven. You might know Taylor from previous solo albums or bands but most likely from Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band. He was the guitar player who also wrote and sang Snake Hill and Air Mattress on the album Outer South. If youve seen Maria Taylor play then you have most likely seen Kate in her band either playing keys, drums, or bass, and most importantly, harmonizing the soft beautiful background melodies. Nowadays, Kate and Taylor have joined forces in the band Dead Fingers.
In a time when guy-girl duos are becoming quite popular, this one is not just some gimmick, however perfect the timing and package may be. In fact, this Alabama duo are recently married and the two just recorded their first self titled full-length with Bruce Watson (RL Burnside, Junior Kimbrough , AA Bondy), and it is being released on Big Legal Mess/Fat Possum Records.
While showing a wide range of styles, ranging from duet styled songs like those of John Prine and Iris DeMent, X, or Lee Hazelwood and Ann Margaret, to straight up great classic rock bands like the Stones, Beatles, or even Traveling Wilburys, this band should find a nice home with fans of more current duos like She and Him, Jenny and Johnny and Civil Wars.1. Closet Full of Bones
2. Another Planet
3. 4 Stone Coaches
4. Hold On To
5. Ring Around Saturn
6. Please Don't Let Me Go
7. Against The River
8. On My Way
9. Lost In Mississippi
10. Never Be My Man
11. Wheels and Gasoline$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Maria Taylor has been beguiling listeners since 1997, from her start in Little Red Rocket as a teenager to her time spent as half of the acclaimed duo Azure Ray to her career as a solo artist. Shes released a trio of varied, accomplished, and successful solo albums over six years; 2005s 11:11, 2007s Lynn Teeter Flower, 2009s LadyLuck and in 2010, after a six-year hiatus from Azure Ray, she reunited with Orenda Fink for the bands fourth album, Drawing Down The Moon.
Taylors journey has carried her from hometown Birmingham, AL, to Athens, GA, to Omaha, NE, and to Los Angeles, CA, and on tours all over the world. Guided by an indomitable inner compass, her instincts called her home to Birmingham in early 2010. She packed her things in LA and drove southeasterly, unsure exactly why but heading back to her family and to the South, which has always greatly influenced her music.
It was surprising to Taylor then, that after buying her first house and settling in, she was unable to write any songs for an entire year. Concerned, but busy with touring and promotion around Azure Rays new album, she carried on. Then last December during a month-long break, she finally wrote a song, the ruminative and haunting Happenstance, and the floodgates opened. Taylor hid away in her bedroom for two weeks, writing and demo-ing the nine songs that now make up her lush fourth LP Overlook.
With a distinct, raw sound in mind, Taylor self-produced for the first time and called upon friend and neighbor Lester Nuby III (Verbena, Vulture Whale) to engineer Overlook. She sought to capture the sound of the South, of Alabama and its music scene, enlisting a host of local musicians to flesh out the album and lend their personalities to the songs. These contributions proved invaluable: Browan Lollar (Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit) handled lead guitar on all tracks, while adding acoustic and lap steel throughout; brother Macey (The Mystic Valley Band, A.A. Bondy) played bass on the entire record, adding banjo, organ, and keys; and Nuby provided his formidable drumming skills on two tracks, while Taylor herself played the remaining drum parts. Sister Kate played and sang on a couple of songs, including Matador, and dad Macey, Sr. played mandolin and sang on Bad Idea?, which was recorded completely live after only a few practices, simply seven of her close friends standing in a circle, making music. The sessions ran loose and easy, with family and friends often stopping in and spending time as she recorded. Taylor even hired LA-based but Birmingham-native Daniel Farris to mix the album, and her friend, local artist Margarette Simmons, designed Overlooks artwork.
In addition to tracking many songs live, Taylor kept a number of her own demo tracks (drum, guitar, keyboard) recorded in her bedroom straight to her computer without a microphone, in the final songs; the result maintains the unguarded honesty captured in the first moments of creation.
Much of Overlook is about the searching and uncertainties that come with growing up and growing older. The songs vary in sound from alluringly bold and immediate, and softer contemplation. Masterplan is the taut, simmering intro to the albums richness, all thundering drums, jangly guitar, and soaring keys, as Taylors evocative vocals haunt like a warning bell. Matador then shifts gears to a sultry, lusciously modern take on 60s pop strut unlike anything shes written before. Relationship gone-sour tale In A Bad Way follows later in the album and shares a similarly seductive, but looser, groove. The old-time shuffle of Bad Idea? could have been heard in a 1920s speakeasy, while the sunny guitars of This Could Take A Lifetime belie the dark and longing ache found within the songs bedrock. All through Overlook, Taylors voice is illuminating, drawing listeners in with its warm and resolute yet vulnerable grace.1. Masterplan
4. Like It Does
5. Bad Idea?
6. Idle Mind
7. In A Bad Way
8. This Could Take a Lifetime
9. Along for the Ride$14.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now