country Archive

Album Review: Amanda Anne Platt & the Honeycutters — Christmas on a Greyhound Bus

When an artist releases an album (or EP) of holiday music, it need not be designed to fulfill an obligation to a label. It also needn’t be a placeholder while a creatively spent artist treads water, waiting for the muse to return. And it doesn’t have to be a schmaltzy, pandering and overly sentimental collection

Hundred-word Reviews for December 2019, #2

With the end of 2019 on the horizon, I figure now’s as good a time as any to bring things up to date with another batch of quick reviews. In this edition: all new music, ten titles. Blues, powerpop, jazz and more. All worth your time. Maybe even a Great Gift Idea™. Happy holidays! Coco

Casey Kristofferson: Coming Home to Country

With a surname like Kristofferson, a musician is essentially presented with two options: they can run from preconceived notions, heading in an altogether different musical direction. Or they can embrace the benefits and expectations that come with the famous name, and strive to live up to it. Singer, songwriter and guitarist Casey Kristofferson first chose

Hello Stranger: RiddleFest Celebrates Life and Work of Overlooked Musician and Song Collector

Lesley Riddle is an important yet mostly overlooked figure in the history of American music. A musician and folklorist, he collaborated with –and greatly influenced the Carter Family. As an African American who as key in the development of country music, he deserves honor and recognition. Now in its 12th year, the annual RiddleFest celebrates

Amanda Anne Platt & the Honeycutters: Get What You Need

Amanda Anne Platt launched her recording career with 2009’s Irene. A decade later – after countless live shows and three more albums of original material – she’s ready to revisit some of the songs on her debut release. “I wanted [Live at the Grey Eagle] to be kind of a career survey,” she says. “I

Dwight Yoakam: Honky Tonk Man

Dwight Yoakam launched a life in music at precisely the wrong time. But over the ensuing decades, he helped bend country music – or at least a significant part of it – in the direction he pursued. For his efforts, he has become a commercially successful and critically acclaimed artist, winning two Grammys and awards

Gold Light + Snakemusk: Shadows and Light

The first recorded project from Gold Light + Snakemusk – the duo of former Kovacs and the Polar Bear multi-instrumentalist Joe Chang and singer-guitarist Beau Campolong – is a new album, Shadows in the Shallows. The duo digs deep into a country duo sound that recalls Johnny and June Cash as well as Gram Parsons

Asheville’s Top 10 for 2018

2018 has brought forth a bumper crop of superb albums in every genre from artists local (or with strong connections) to Asheville and the surrounding region. Any of these 10 could arguably claim the top spot, and I can immediately think of at least 10 more that would easily warrant inclusion on the list. The

No Way Out of Here: The Unicorn Story (Part Two)

Continued from Part One… David Gilmour wasn’t a complete novice in the ways of the studio. Then 27 years old, the guitarist had already co-produced six albums with Pink Floyd; he also handled production duties for the challenging sessions that yielded much of the material on Syd Barrett’s two solo albums. And his ear was

No Way Out of Here: The Unicorn Story (Part One)

Early demo tapes from Unicorn, a country-rock group and protégés of Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour, show that the underappreciated British group had an authentic yet radio-ready sound that should have caught on. Despite a number of lucky breaks, the well-deserving band never lit commercial fire. But now there’s a new archival release from Omnivore Recordings,