album review: cory branan — the no-hit wonder

When Cory opened for Gaslight earlier this year, he told a story about a friend who occasionally covers his song “The Corner” and sings a line wrong; he sings down on the corner of what I want and what I intend to get, where the actual line is what I tend to get. They both…

concerts: the gaslight anthem & cory branan @ cat’s cradle

Setlist: ’59 Sound / Old White Lincoln / Biloxi Parish / Howl / Stay Lucky / Film Noir / The Patient Ferris Wheel / 45 / The Queen Of Lower Chelsea / Boxer / Too Much Blood / Wooderson / Drive / American Slang // Encore: National Anthem / Handwritten / Great Expectations / House…

concerts: bobby bare jr & cory branan

Wednesday night at the Cradle was a Bloodshot double shot, just like I like it — Bobby Bare, Jr, out in support of his fabulous Undefeated, and Cory Branan supporting, touring behind last year’s Mutt and next year’s new record? Regardless, a great night. Cory took requests and charmed everyone (although to be fair most of…

bloodshot records spring: bobby bare jr & dex romweber

Bobby Bare Jr. — Undefeated: once a year or so, Bloodshot’s new release schedule affords me the opportunity to dig into the back catalog of one of their artists, someone I’ve never really listened to before; this year it’s Bobby Bare, Jr., and it starts with his 2014 release Undefeated. It’s a gem of a…

album review: lydia loveless – somewhere else

If Lydia Loveless’s 2011 Indestructible Machine was a 38 minute punch of broken hearted and bitter but not down or out cowpunk, 2013’s Somewhere Else starts with a blast of guitars that can’t be mistaken for anything but rock and roll. “Really Wanna See You” has a typical Loveless theme: an ex who broke her…

justin townes earle @ southland ballroom

I didn’t see nearly as many show this year as I have the past three. There are reasons for that, but they’re not particularly relevant. As I was finishing my work day yesterday, though, I reflected that even in a small sample size, I got to see so many bands I adore, it was worth…

release news: the bottle rockets reissue self-titled & the brooklyn side

Somewhere betwen my discovery of Bloodshot Records in 2002 (Neko Case, though she’d just left the label; Kelly Hogan; the Waco Brothers; Rex Hobert & the Misery Boys) and my current dig through Robbie Fulks and Scott H. Biram’s extensive back catalogs, I spent a lot of time trolling used CD bins at record stores…

album review: ha ha tonka — lessons

i’m close to the age that i only do things that i know how to do i can make coffee and i can make small talk ’cause who wants to try something new? And so starts “Dead To The World” and Lessons, the astonishing 4th LP from Missouri quartet Ha Ha Tonka. I have spent…

interview: brian roberts of ha ha tonka

Tomorrow Ha Ha Tonka drops Lessons, their spectacular 4th LP follow-up to three previous spectacular LPs (there’ll be a review tomorrow morning!), and I’ve got some answers from Brian Roberts, guitarist and lead singer, on a variety of subjects — Maurice Sendak, making art, Brett’s mandolin, and the Pirates’ resurgence. Read more below, and thanks…