Here’s our pick of the top new Country and Americana releases for the week of 07/08/2020.
All of this week’s new tracks are also on our New Release Round-up 2020 playlist on Spotify, along with every other song we’ve included in this feature during the year so far. If you’re a Spotify user, give it a follow so you can keep up to date!
Keith Urban – Change Your Mind
Keith’s new album The Speed Of Now, Part 1 will arrive on 18th September, and this is the latest track to appear from it. Previous tracks such as Polaroid and Superman will likely have disappointed country purists, but it’s a direction of travel that Keith has been on for a while now. That said, Change Your Mind is maybe more Ripcord than Graffiti U (reminds us a little of Break On Me, for example), so the new album could yet be a bit of a surprise package.
Aubrie Sellers – A Thousand Miles From Nowhere
She only released her most recent album Far From Home 6 months ago, but that hasn’t stopped Aubrie Sellers serving up a new EP. World On Fire is as good a title for a 2020 release as any. The EP is 3 track set of covers, featuring Chris Isaak’s chart monster Wicked Game, Pops Staples’ bluesy shuffle Somebody Was Watching and this, a retake of Dwight Yoakam’s A Thousand Miles From Nowhere. Aubrie and her partner Ethan Ballinger have taken all the 90’s country jangle and bounce and replaced it with an open, reverb-heavy arrangement that roots the song in a deeper, lonelier place that Aubrie’s voice floats just above. Think of Golden Hour with distortion and a jagged edge, and you’ll get the idea.
Mo Pitney – Plain and Simple
Mo shows here once again how he so perfectly brings together different pieces of country music into one. Plain and Simple is a modern country song but it’s lyrical sentiment is more old-fashioned romantic than most of today’s music, and he and producer Jim “Moose” Brown serve it with traditional instruments that still sound fresh. Add Mo’s distinctive, timeless voice and you have an irresistable combination. New album Ain’t Lookin’ Back is released on 14th August and everything we’ve heard so far tells us it’s going to be one of the highlights of the year.
Kree Harrison – That’s How Hearts Get Broken
Co-written by Chris Stapleton, Morgane Stapleton and Liz Rose, That’s How Hearts Get Broken is the latest song to arrive ahead of Kree Harrison’s second album Chosen Family Tree. The album drops on 21st August, having been pushed back from an original June release date. A clean, classic, gentle sound on this with fiddles and steel guitar alongside piano and percussion, with plenty of room for Kree’s voice to deliver the heartbreak.
Charles Esten – Sweet Summer Saturday Night
Laid back summer vibes are the order of the day (or night) on this radio friendly new track from Charles Esten. Fireflies, reservoirs, girls, beer, rope swings, and a song that takes you back to your youth are all in the mix on a cut that’ll fit just nicely on any summer playlist.
Waylon Payne – Back From The Grave
Releasing a new album in “sets” is something we’ve seen a number of times over the last year or so, and Waylon Payne has taken that approach with his new release. Back From The Grave is from Act III of his new album Blue Eyes, The Harlot, The Queer, The Pusher & Me (which, by the way, is surely one of the best album titles of the year). Co-written with Brandy Clark and Clint Lagerberg, it’s a mid-tempo, free-wheeling celebration of triumph and victory over hard times and despair, full of the joy and relief that comes from someone who’s been through it and come out the other side. The album as a whole is due for release on 11th September.
Paul Cauthen – Bones
There can be few voices around right now that are more distinctive than Paul Cauthen’s. It’s a deep, brooding, doom-laden organ that naturally lends itself to songs like Bones, a rhythmic, stomping chain gang chant of a track that talks of dealing with the things that burden us and slow us down. “There’s something waiting, it can’t be found | Tied to the chains of what’s going in the ground | Right now I’m strong but I’m not naive | One day this could be, be the death of me”.
Mitch Rossell – Then Again
Poor Mitch is in a bit of a fix. He’s a bit of a loner and a free spirit who finds relationships a bit of a bind, so he’s split with his girl. But then again, she has a touch like a summer breeze and a heart of gold, so has he done the right thing? Mitch is maybe best known for writing Garth Brooks’ no.1 hit Ask Me How I Know, but he’s been successfully performing and recording his own material for a number of years now and his catalog is well worth a visit – but for now, enjoy this latest release.