Musical archaeology (part 10) – Whiskeytown

We'll be reviewing the new Ryan Adams album soon, supposedly his best for years, so I though we'd go back to his original band, Whiskeytown.  Whiskeytown could sound a bit pedal steel at times, and one could argue they were one of the inventors of Americana, but Adams always had a raw feel to his voice, knew how to rock out,  and Whiskeytown never descended into country mawkishness.

After the band, he made his two classic solo albums, Gold and Heartbreaker - the latter being right up there with Dylan's Blood on the Tracks as an all-time great singer-songwriter break-up album.

Unfortunately, for the last few years, he's lacked internal quality control and has issued a string of albums which, while never without merit, have covered everything from 70s glam to outright country back to pretty hard rock. And all of them contain some great songs and some you'd be quite happy never to hear again.

But the 3 Whiskeytown albums are all well worth seeking out, and Stranger's Almanac (1997), from which these two tracks are taken is, quite possibly, my single favourite album of all time.

Do listen to these two tracks. Then buy Stranger's Almanac. then buy everything else Whiskeytown produced...

 

First Voice

  1. David Atkinson:

    Whiskeytown and Ryan Adams – now you’re talking!

    Adams’ first solo ‘Heartbreaker’ is a classic (and available on double-vinyl for a tenner or so from Amazon) but all of these albums are worth searching out.

    One question that has bugged me….on ‘Stranger’s Almanac’, the track ‘Excuse Me..’ has a vocal by an uncredited Tom Petty? I’ve never been sure. What do you know PS?

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