Calexico Announce New Album The Thread That Keeps Us

Image Courtesy of Calexico

Alt-country legends Calexico have this week announced plans to release their ninth studio album The Thread That Keeps Us.

Due for release on the 26th January, The Thread That Keeps Us is Calexico’s first since 2015’s acclaimed Edge of Sun.

“There’s a little more chaos and noise in the mix than what we’ve done in the past,” co-founder Joey Burns explains. “Whenever we’re writing and we come up with something that feels too familiar, someone will end up saying, ‘That feels good, but let’s keep going and see what else we can uncover’. It’s been really important to the arc of this band’s evolution for us to always keep on trying new things.”

The first taster of The Thread That Keeps Us is the rocky “End of the World With You” take a listen here:

The full track listing for The Thread That Keeps Us is below:

1. End of the World with You
2. Voices in the Field
3. Bridge to Nowhere
4. Spinball
5. Under the Wheels
6. The Town & Miss Lorraine
7. Flores y Tamales
8. Another Space
9. Unconditional Waltz
10. Girl in the Forest
11. Eyes Wide Awake
12. Dead in the Water
13. Shortboard
14. Thrown to the Wild
15. Music Box

Listen to the New Single From The Stetson Family, “Brother”

The Stetson Family
Image Courtesy of The Stetson Family

Melbourne alt-country favourites The Stetson Family have just released their new single “Brother”.

Written by The Stetson Family frontwoman Nadine Budge, the track is filled with the band’s signature throwback country and Americana flavour.

Take a listen to “Brother” below:

To celebrate the release of “Brother” The Stetson Family have a bunch of shows and festival appearances coming up as well as a Monday night residency at The Retreat Hotel in Melbourne throughout October. The full list of remaining dates are here:

Monday 23rd October – The Retreat Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
Monday 30th October – The Retreat Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
Saturday 11th November – Healesville Music Festival, Healsville, VIC
Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th November – MountainGrass Festival, Harrietville, VIC
Friday 1st December – Theatre Royal, Castlemaine, VIC

Timber and Steel Video Premiere: “Something to Lose” from Rachel Baiman

Rachel Baiman
Image Courtesy of Rachel Baiman

American folk and old-time singer Rachel Baiman has been getting a bunch of buzz lately following the release of her excellent album Shame.

“I wasn’t necessarily trying to write songs that would be easy to listen to,” Baiman explained on Shame. “I wanted to write about reality, in all of it’s terror and beauty.”

The latest single from Shame is the melancholy “Something to Lose”. We’re extremely lucky to have the debut of a live video of “Something to Lose”, recorded as part of the StarHouse Concert Series in Boulder Colorado. Check it out below:

Rachel Baiman would be well known to Australian audiences as one half of 10 String Symphony. Next January the singer and multi-instrumentalist will be returning to our shores for an east coast tour, with pan-Pacific trio One Up Two Down in support.

The full list of dates are below:

Wednesday 3rd January – Junk Bar, Brisbane, QLD
Thursday 4th January – Megan Hall, Dorrigo, NSW
Friday 5th January – Upper Lansdowne Hall, Upper Lansdowne, NSW
Saturday 6th January – Thirroul Railway Institute Hall, Thirroul, NSW
Sunday 7th January -Metropole Guest House, Katoomba, NSW
Monday 8th January – Petersham Bowling Club, Sydney, NSW
Thursday 11th January – Spotted Mallard, Melbourne, VIC

Watch the New Brooke Russell and The Mean Reds Video “Take A Little Time”

Brooke Russell
Image Courtesy of Brooke Russell and The Mean Reds

The new album from Brooke Russell and The Mean Reds, The Way You Leave, is due for release on the 18th October and to get you excited the alt-country band have just released their new video “Take A Little Time”.

The track is pairs Brooke Russell and The Mean Reds unique indie-meets-country sound with some wonderful vintage footage. Check it out below:

Brooke Russell and The Mean Reds will be launching The Way You Leave at The Spotted Mallard in Melbourne on the 21st October with Xani and Cookie Baker in support. For more information check out the official Facebook event here.

Watch the New Katie Brianna Video “Thorn In Your Side”

Katie Brianna
Image Courtesy of Katie Brianna

Sydney alt-country singer-songwriter Katie Brianna has just released her latest single and video “Thorn In Your Side”.

The single is the third from her amazing album Victim or the Heroine and was written when Katie Brianna was at a low point.

“When you feel like you’re not wanted or needed in someone’s life but at the same time can’t let them go,” Katie Brianna said. “When you feel like a burden. When they keep you close but it feels like they’re trying to push you away. They need to let you go, rip you off like a bandaid, or pull you out like a thorn in their skin that is causing them pain, or you’ll hold onto them and that hope forever.”

Check out the video for “Thorn In Your Side” below:

Review: First Annual Australian Americana Honours Night

Americana Honours
Image Courtesy of the Americana Music Association

Australian Americana Honours Night feat. Old Crow Medicine Show, Valerie June, Kevin Welch, Busby Marou, Kasey Chambers, Shane Howard, Yirrmal, Bernard Fanning, Catherine Britt, Henry Wagons, Emily Barker, Ruby Boots, Jordie Lane & The Sleepers
Thornbury Theatre, Melbourne, VIC
Monday 2nd October, 2017

Like many people I woke up Tuesday morning to the horrible news that an evil individual had killed dozens and injured hundreds of people in a mass shooting in Las Vegas. What’s really hit home about this latest atrocity is that it was committed at the Route 91 Harvest country music festival – a festival not unlike the festivals the Timber and Steel community attends all the time here in Australia. Words cannot describe the emotions I’m feeling right now. It’s senseless, just senseless.

As the events in Vegas were unfolding on Monday night night I was sitting in the warm confines of Melbourne’s Thornbury Theatre for the first annual Australian Americana Honours Night. It was a coming together of the Australian Americana community and a celebration of a genre that has so much heart and soul behind it. As so often happens with these events I was overwhelmed with the community that’s been created around the music we love.

From the opening marching-band entrance of Old Crow Medicine Show’s live version of “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35” to the closing singalong of “May The Circle Be Unbroken” featuring Old Crow, Valerie June, Kasey Chambers and Kevin Welch, the Australian Americana Honours Night was pure joy from start to finish.

Americana Honours

It would be too easy to look at the events in Vegas and decide that you’re not going to music festivals anymore. Despite how irrational it is, despite the fact that hundreds, if not thousands of festivals are held around the world every year without incident, it would be easy to walk away from live music.

If it wasn’t for the Australian Americana Honours Night last night maybe I would have made the easy decision and walked away from live music festivals. At the very least maybe I would’ve reconsidered my bucket list of international festivals, striking all off the US-based events.

But when you’re listening to Kasey Chambers and Bernard Fanning duet on “Watch Over Me”, when you can feel the goosebumps from Yirrmal’s surprise performance with Shane Howard, when Henry Wagons literally owns the entire stage while performing “King Hit”, when artists you’ve been following and supporting for years like Ruby Boots, Emily Barker, Catherine Britt, Jordie Lane and Busby Marou get roaring applause from the gathered fans and industry folk, you know there’s no way you can give this up.

Americana Honours

Kasey Chambers and Brian “BT” Taranto were both honoured with vanguard awards on the night and both of them gave passionate speeches about how important Americana music is. How much the community means. To me it was almost a call to arms – a plea to keep the candle burning for good music. To keep going to festivals, to gigs, to keep buying records and to keep the passion alive.

When I woke up Tuesday morning, before I turned to my smart phone, before I knew the full extent of what had happened in Las Vegas, I was still buzzing from the Australian Americana Honours Night, and the 3+ hours of amazing music I’d witnessed the night before. And even as the world came crashing down around me as I scrolled through the news it wasn’t enough to extinguish the light that is burning for live music.

The best way to not let the bastards win? Keep going to live music. Keep going to festivals. Show your support, be part of the community of amazing people who keep this music alive, and enjoy every minute of it.

Thank you Australian Americana Honours.

Watch the New Carpenter Caswell Video “Want That Back Again” featuring Felicity Urquhart

Carpenter Caswell
Image Courtesy of Carpenter Caswell

Americana (or is that Australicana?) duo Carpenter Caswell have just released their new single and video “Want That Back Again” featuring a duet with the legendary Felicity Urquhart.

The track explores the “fleeting nature of enduring love and romance in long term relationships”.

“Many of my friends talk to me about their love and affection for their partners, but that they wish it was like it was when they began” Michael Carpenter from the band explained.

Check out the video for “Want That Back Again” below:

Carpenter Caswell have plans to release their debut album soon, with exact details still to be announced. The pair are also planning an east coast tour – there’s a couple of dates announced already (see below) but expect more to come:

Thursday 19th October – Leadbelly, Sydney, NSW
Friday 27th October – Rooty Hill RSL, Rooty Hill, NSW

Details of the Welcome to Morrisonville Americana Festival

Shane Nicholson
Image Courtesy of Shane Nicholson

For the second year in a row iconic Brisbane venue The Morrison Hotel will be playing host to Welcome To Morrisonville, a festival featuring some of the best artists on the Americana music scene.

Taking place on the 28th October Welcome To Morrisonville will feature live performances from Shane Nicholson (above), Henry Wagons & The Only Children, Tracy McNeil & The Good Life, Gretta Ziller and Jen Mize.

To get more information about Welcome To Morrisonville including how to get your hands on tickets check out the official Facebook event here.

The Americana Music Association of Australia Birthday Bash

Birthday Bash

The Americana Music Association of Australia (AMAA) will be taking over Australian Music Week in Cronulla, Sydney this year with a bunch of conference and live music events throughout the week.

As well as the Americana Music Association of Australia Conference on the 4th November, the AMAA is set to announce a raft of live music events in the days prior, the first of which is their first Birthday Bash concert on Friday 3rd November.

The Birthday Bash will feature live performances from Gretta Ziller, Small Town Romance, The Ahern Brothers, Andrew Swift, Georgia State Line, Hana and Jessie-Lee, The April Family and special guest Anne Kirkpatrick.

More details about the Birthday Bash and other Australian Music Week events will be announced soon. To stay up to date, and get your hands on tickets, visit the official AMAA website here.

Ralway Bell Announce National Tour

Ralway Bell
Image Courtesy of Ralway Bell

Perth alt-country band Ralway Bell have announced they’re hitting the road for a national tour to celebrate the release of their debut album Dear Friends, due on the 5th October.

Ralway Bell will be hitting the road from October with shows planned in Victoria, New South Wales, The ACT and of course their home state of Western Australia. The tour will include festival slots at the Wingham Akoostik Festival, WAMFest Live Saturday and Blues at Bridgetown.

Check out the full list of dates below:

Friday 6th October – Western Port Hotel, Phillip Island, VIC
Saturday 7th October – Billyroy’s Blues Bar, Bendigo, VIC
Sunday 8th October – The Standard Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
Tuesday 10th October – Smiths Alternative, Canberra, ACT
Thursday 12th October – The Junkyard, Maitland, NSW
Friday 13th October – The Oriental Hotel, Newcastle, NSW
Saturday 14th October – Wingham Akoostik Festival, Wingham, NSW
Sunday 15th October – Union Hotel, Sydney, NSW
Friday 20th October – Riverside Hotel, Northam, WA
Saturday 21st October – North Perth Town Hall, Perth, WA
Thursday 26th October – Quindanning Inne, Quindanning, WA
Friday 27th October – Harvey Dickson’s Rodeo, Boyup Brook, WA
Saturday 4th November – WAMFest Live, Perth, WA
Saturday 11th November – Blues at Bridgetown Festival, Bridgetown, WA

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