It is that time of month again when we feature some of the albums sent to us via those nice folks and ReviewShine (with the usual apologies to those we have not featured).
Pride of place this month goes to what is probably the best new album I have heard so far this year: "Ghost of Browder Holler" by Chelle Rose. Browder Holler is down in East Tennessee, which is where Chelle herself is from. She really makes the place come alive with a very nice line in character and story songs of the South of the sort you associate with Tony Joe White, Larry Jon Wilson and James "No Middle Name" McMurtry. In other words, bloody good songs.
Vocally and stylistically the immediate comparison is with Lucinda Williams. But while Chelle has a fair bit of Big Lucy about her, it does not take long for her own personality to come through. It seems pretty clear that she has lived many of these songs.
The album comes out on 1 May on Lil' Damsel records. Make sure you get it.
"Shady Grove Gonna Blow" - Chelle Rose
Next up is Audrey Auld, originally from Tasmania - you know, where the devils come from - but based in Nashville for many years now. She has been releasing albums on her own Reckless Records for 14 years or so, and has recently released a twenty track retrospective called "Resurrection Moon" which is well worth checking out. This next track is a particular favourite of mine.
"Bolinas" - Audrey Auld
Third in the line-up today, Sam Cash from Toronto - you know, where the Torontonians come from - who has a long way to go to catch up with Audrey. Earlier this month he released his debut album "Teenage Hunger". I particularly like this song, which has a slight touch of Josh Rouse about it.
"September" - Sam Cash
And the last stop on this whistle-stop tour is "Reverb and Tambourine", an album by Jon Reid released on Monday by Shell from a Shadow records. Jon is from Asheville, North Carolina, a town where I spent a very enjoyable few days back in 1999 or thereabouts. And now I have a reason to go back. The whole album is pretty good, but the arrangement on this one makes it stand out for me.
"Ode to Common Things" - Jon Reid
Speaking of Asheville, here is a clip of Ray Wylie Hubbard performing there a couple of years back. What makes this a most appropriate choice for today is the fact that old Ray Wylie H produced the Chelle Rose album I was raving about earlier, and he is covering James "No Middle Name" McM with whom I drew comparison. With links like that, the call up for Radio 2 can only be a matter of time.