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Tuesday, June 05, 2012

ROUTES & BRANCHES
June 2, 2012
Scott Foley

Announcements were made this week regarding the nominees for 2012's Americana Honors and Awards.  While they rarely coincide with my own year-end favorites, the American Awards do a far better job of approximating what a mainstream take on our kind of music might look like than do, say, the Grammys, which fail across the board.  Curious misstep of the year:  Hayes Carll is up for Artist Of the Year even though he hasn't released anything since last February's KMAG YOYO which was already nominated for a couple categories in 2011's awards.  Best step:  Either pegging the Guy Clark tribute This One's For Him for album of the year or the truly strong top-to-bottom lineup for New And Emerging Arist:  Alabama Shakes, Dawes, Deep Dark Woods and Robert Ellis.  For this Episode of R&B, we touch briefly on a couple of the more prominent nominees - it seems to be Jason Isbell's award to lose this year. 

We also enjoy a first peek into Colorado's own 4H Royalty as they unleash their sophomore album.  After dallying with a solo career, Raul Malo reunites with his Mavericks.  Rhett Miller steps outside of his Old 97s day job for his fifth solo effort, which early listens indicate just might be his best.  Whereas previous outings have perhaps tried to hard to put distance between the 97s and Rhett's solo sound, The Dreamer settles into a more natural groove, retaining much of the alt.country vibe while focusing on the perfect pop instincts that have always made him such a stellar songwriter. 


*  Lucinda Williams, "Sweet Side"  World Without Tears  (Lost Hwy, 03)
*  Dr Dog, "Get Away"  Be the Void  (Anti, 12)
*  BoDeans, "American"  American  Made  (Free & Alive, 12)
*  Haunted Windchimes, "Out With the Crow"  Out With the Crow  (Blank Tape, 12)
*  Honeycutters, "Penny"  When Bitter Met Sweet  (Buttons Down, 12)
*  Neil Young & Crazy Horse, "Travel On"  Americana  (Reprise, 12)
*  Townes Van Zandt, "No Lonesome Tune"  Late Great TVZ  (EMI, 72)
*  4H Royalty, "Virtues Spices & Liquors"  Where UFOs Go To Die  (Self, 12)  D
*  Chelle Rose, "Browder Holler Boy"  Ghost Of Browder Holler  (Lil Damsel, 12)
*  Langhorne Slim, "Bad Luck"  Way We Move  (Ramseur, 12)
*  Jayhawks, "Stumbling Through the Dark"  Rainy Day Music  (Lost Hwy, 03)
*  Shawn Colvin, "Neon Light Of the Thousand Days"  All Fall Down  (Nonesuch, 12)
*  Robert Cline Jr, "Another Day Another Dollar"  All the Right Reasons  (Mockingbird, 12)
*  Magnolia Mountain w/Lydia Loveless, "Shotgun Divorce"  Town & Country  (Self, 12)  D
*  Two Dollar Pistols, "You Cleared Every Hurdle"  Here Tomorrow Gone Today  (8th House, 07)
*  John Fullbright, "Gawd Above"  From the Ground Up  (Blue Dirt, 12)
*  Lukas Nelson, "Ain't No Answer"  Wasted  (Tone Tide, 12)
*  Jason Isbell, "Alabama Pines"  Here We Rest  (Lightning Rod, 11)
*  Mavericks, "Born To Be Blue"  Suited Up and Ready EP  (Valory, 12)  D
*  Joe Sampson, "Moon Up Above"  Kill Our Friends  (Fellow Creature, 12)
*  Gillian Welch, "Down Along the Dixie Line"  Harrow & the Harvest  (Acony, 11)
*  Turnpike Troubadours, "Good Lord Lorrie"  Goodbye Normal Street  (Bossier City, 12)
^  Rhett Miller, "Lost Without You"  Dreamer  (Maximum Sunshine, 12)
*  Rosie Flores, "Baby Took a Limo To Memphis"  This One's For Him  (Icehouse, 11)
*  Jason Ringenberg, "Pocket Of Soul"  Pocketful Of Soul  (Courageous Chicken, 00)
*  Steve Earle, "Waitin' On the Sky"  I'll Never Get Out Of This World Alive  (New West, 11)
*  Robert Plant, "Angel Dance"  Band Of Joy  (Rounder, 10)

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