Posts Tagged ‘Southeastern Records’

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We could all use a little Jason Isbell right now. Thankfully, the Alabama-bred/Nashville-based country singer and beloved songwriter is right on time with a new album. His next project with his ace country-rock band the 400 Unit, “Reunions”, arrives next month, the follow-up to 2017’s critically adored The Nashville Sound. That album garnered them new attention in corners where they may have been previously unknown, but Isbell’s longtime fans have been lapping up his music for the better part of 20 years.

He’s never really made a bad album, either with his band or solo, so the bar is high for Reunions. So far, the singles have been both thoughtful and delicate (“Dreamsicle” and “Only Children” are introspective and nostalgic) as well as powerful and politically forthcoming in the vein of “White Man’s World” (“What’ve I Done To Help” and “Be Afraid” both examine our current moment with criticism and bite). Isbell is one of the most consistent songwriters of his day, and his music always has a lot of heart. Indeed, the hopes are high for this new album, but I have faith in Jason Isbell. He knows his way around a country song.

Southeastern Records. Released on:  27th March 2020.

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In addition to his new album, Jason Isbell unveiled the lead single, “Be Afraid,” as well as a tour with dates that run from February until September. and span headlining shows to festivals. Grammy Award-winning singer, songwriter and musician Jason Isbell and his band the 400 Unit will release their highly anticipated new album, “Reunions”, May 15th via Spunk Records. Produced by Grammy Award-winning producer Dave Cobb and recorded at Nashville’s historic RCA Studio A, the album features 10 new songs written by Isbell including album track, “Be Afraid,”.

Reunions is Isbell’s seventh full-length studio album and the fourth released with his band, the 400 UnitDerry deBorja (piano, keyboard, organ, omnichord), Chad Gamble (drums, tambourine), Jimbo Hart (bass), Amanda Shires (fiddle) and Sadler Vaden (acoustic guitar, electric guitar). The new album also includes background vocals from special guests David Crosby (Crosby, Stills & Nashthe Byrds) and Jay Buchanan (Rival Sons)..

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit have shared a new song from their forthcoming album Reunions which is out May 15. “Only Children” is spare and somber and quite lovely.

“There are a lot of ghosts on this album,” Isbell said in a press release. “Sometimes the songs are about the ghosts of people who aren’t around anymore, but they’re also about who I used to be, the ghost of myself. I found myself writing songs that I wanted to write 15 years ago, but in those days, I hadn’t written enough songs to know how to do it yet. Just now have I been able to pull it off to my own satisfaction. In that sense, it’s a reunion with the me I was back then.”

Of the release, Isbell shares, “There are a lot of ghosts on this album. Sometimes the songs are about the ghosts of people who aren’t around anymore, but they’re also about who I used to be, the ghost of myself. I found myself writing songs that I wanted to write fifteen years ago, but in those days, I hadn’t written enough songs to know how to do it yet. Just now have I been able to pull it off to my own satisfaction. In that sense it’s a reunion with the me I was back then.”

Originally from Green Hill, Alabama and now based in Nashville, Isbell is widely renowned as one of the greatest songwriters of his generation. Since the release of his breakthrough solo album, Southeastern, in 2013,

NPR Music calls him, “one of the finest singer-songwriters working at the intersection of folk, country and rock today,” and continues, “his songs have an exquisite, rawboned realism and deeply embedded class consciousness,” while American Songwriter declares, “There’s no better songwriter on the planet at this moment, no one operating with the same depth, eloquence or feeling” and USA Today proclaims, “he has developed into one o the great American songwriters…in a world where most pop songs are lies, Isbell is determined to find truth.”

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit “Be Afraid” Southeastern Records marketed and distributed by Thirty Tigers

Jason Isbell’s seventh solo album, “Reunions”, will be released on May 15th.

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One thing that Jason Isbell doesn’t always get to do is just rock the hell out. As a former member of Drive-By Truckers, and now as a solo artist, one picture of Isbell is as a thoughtful and introspective dude who documents the whole “Southern thing” as well as anyone going, while kind of keeping the amps dialed down.

That couldn’t be further from the truth on “Cumberland Gap,” the second single from his soon-to-be-released sixth album. With his former band The 400 Unit backing him up, Isbell blazes through the dusty and abandoned trails of the titular Appalachian pass. The song’s character at every turn and every squall of guitar is just trying to get out of Dodge. A small town’s bars are no longer an escape but another form of oppression. There’s not much wealth to be spread around. The mines have shut down, and one of the few opportunities for employment is to go fight in some bullshit war. It’s as though the man of “Outfit” has stuck around for too long and the realization has hit him like a ‘69 Chevy with a 396 going 80 mph. The Cumberland Gap swallowed his daddy up, and now it’s doing the same to him. It’s certainly one of the more darkly affective tunes Isbell has crafted, and absolutely one of this year’s best rock songs.

The Nashville Sound is out June 16th on Southeastern Records.

This former Drive-By Trucker has been steadily and quietly improving since he first went solo in 2007, and we’re now to the point where he completely overshadows his old band. This album does a great job showing why. Isbell’s lyrics are warm and incisive and empathetic — quick, economical sketches of people in go-nowhere towns who rarely get to hear themselves depicted with this level of real-talk dignity. And his music is intuitive and lived-in. Isbell’s miles-deep baritone can be conversationally pleasant on the verses, but when he hits the chorus, it always wells up into something huge.

Jason Isbell — Something More Than Free (July 10th, Southeastern Records)

Former Drive-By Trucker Jason Isbell is one of alt-country’s most reliable voices, particularly in light of his modern classic SoutheasternTo follow-up that 2013 LP, Isbell reunited with its producer, Dave Cobb, for a collection of songs that examine life’s small details and big questions with the same level of astounding sincerity and humble wisdom. Isbell oftentimes sounds like frequent tourmate Ryan Adams during his Cardinals era, particularly when Isbell strips down his sound and lets himself get real blue in the spirit of the Southern literary tradition (see “Speed Trap Town,” then have a good cry). But he also sounds quite different (and traditional, in a classic country sense) when backed by a full band, oftentimes topped off by a piano, a fiddle, and strings.