There are few artists that have come along that have more of an understated, yet powerful and far reaching impact on other artists, as Townes Van Zandt.
From country greats such as Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard and Emmy Lou Harris, to more widely popular and commercial artists as Norah Jones, Lyle Lovett, Robert Plant and Bob Dylan; Townes Van Zandt has inspired, written songs for and been covered by these performers.
An artist that that has been better known for long and famous battles with depression and addiction, Townes Van Zandt had a truly rare gift of being able to paint a visual picture with the words he composed and the music that accompanied it, that would be delivered with the genuine hurt, despair and emotional pain that the author had conceived it with The variety of artists that this man has influenced can easily be the starting point for many varieties of music that most of the listening public enjoys. Rock, Country, Folk and yes, DOOM!
The songs that have been selected for this homage to the original prove in a basic, stripped down fashion, that one does NOT need massive volume and crushing fuzz or, distortion, to carry the weight of the world into your ears.
For this release, that has been whispered about and rumored to be in the works for some time, three of the most greatly creative and prolific artists of our time have come together to convey the greatness of a Townes Van Zandt song to us all. Their delivery is something to be experienced, absorbed and enjoyed.
Scott Kelly, Steve Von Till and Wino, bring to life the aching pain of a life endured more than enjoyed; an experience that left scars and wounds more than smiles. Each song different and seemingly unique and fitted for the one that played it, these songs are the bare bones of a skeleton that is laid bare to the world and it’s ravages, seen by all who would look upon them with some curiosity and in the end, sympathy and compassion, pity even, for those bones.
Each player has taken 3 songs and seemingly gone to the place where they were written and vocally relived the reasons they were written.
The track listing is:
1. Steve Von Till – If I Needed You
2. Scott Kelly – St. John the Gambler
3. Steve Von Till – Black Crow Blues
4. Scott Kelly – Lungs
5. Wino – Rake
6. Steve Von Till – The Snake Song
7. Wino – Nothing
8. Scott Kelly – Tecumseh Valley
9. Wino – A Song For
I won’t be able to convey more to you the reader, as listening to each of these tracks may evoke differing feelings, based on your own life experience, but I will say that you will not be able to hear these songs and not be moved, in some way.
This cd is due out June 12 on the Neurot label @ $14.98.
I, for one, am in awe of each of these songs and will personally state that this is the best recording I’ve heard from any genre of music, in a very long time. If you are to spend your money on a recording worth every cent, this one is it!
This release will truly redefine what IS heavy. I assure you that it is not a down-tuned guitar, blasting fuzz through an amp at painful levels of sound.