Jake Bugg

Jake Bugg

Shuffling, playlisting and cherry-picking your favourite songs is all well and good, but sometimes you can’t beat sitting down with an album and playing it from start to finish. An album that sounds like it was recorded in one room,with the same group of people and that perfectly captures a specific
moment in time.Jake Bugg’s last album, 2016’s On My One, was a dizzyingly eclectic collection of styles and sounds, but for the follow up, the 23-year–old wanted something that felt like the LPs that took pride of place in his own record
collection. Albums take you into their own, sealed world. “On the last album it was fun to experiment with different instruments and writing styles,” reflects Bugg. “But this time around I just wanted to make a complete record as
opposed to a collection of songs. Just write the tunes and record them with great musicians.”He’s certainly got his wish for Hearts That Strain. Starting in January this year,
Bugg would write songs at home then fly out to Nashville to record them with some of the best players in the history of popular music. As part of American Sound Studio’s legendary house band The Memphis Boys, Gene Chrisman and Bobby Woods provided the chops on such pivotal records as Dusty In Memphis, In The Ghetto, Suspicious Minds and Dark End Of The Street, cutting their teeth in sessions with Wilson Pickett, Aretha Franklin and Dionne Warwick.
“They’re old guys but they’re amazing,” Bugg recalls with disbelief. “It was ten to five and then that’s it. They'd pack up and we’d done two or three tunes. It was a mad vibe being from England and meeting these absolute legends and then cutting some tracks with them.” Working with producers David Ferguson and Matt Sweeney, Bugg’s time in
Nashville proved to be incredibly productive. In just three week-long trips they’d finished the album. “Nashville is mad. Everybody plays out there. You go around somebody’s house for a few beers and just jam with them.” One of the people he ended up just jamming with was The Black Keys’ Dan
Auerbach, who collaborated with Bugg on breezy opener How Soon The Dawn, the shuffling rockabilly get-down I Can Burn Alone and In The Event Of My Demise, a tune that sounds like a generations old folk song the pair have
freshly dug up out of the Mississippi mud. “Dan’s wicked,” smiles Bugg. “He’s got this amazing work ethic, he just knuckles down and gets on with it.”
P.T.O

Another chance encounter provided a surprise collaboration. When Bugg was back in the UK writing, mulleted country rock superstar Billy Ray Cyrus stopped by the studio and was so taken with the rough version of Waiting he heard being played off the desk that he suggested his daughter -
younger sister of Miley and rising star in her own right - Noah Cyrus should sing on it. The result is one of Hearts That Strain’s finest moments - a Southern Soul waltz of a ballad to which a swooning Cyrus vocal brings the direct emotional wallop of the best country music. “I’d never really collaborated with many singers so I was a bit unsure," recalls Bugg, "but when they sent it back it was amazing. It was a nice surprise. When I come back in it sounds
terrible, but when she’s singing it sounds alright!”
Nashville, Billy Ray Cyrus, seasoned session pros… anyone for whom the idea of Jake Bugg in a Stetson and bootlace tie might cause unease can rest easy. Hearts That Strain is still very much the same voice and remarkably assured songwriter of Lightning Bolt and Slumville Sunrise, it's more that his surroundings and the players around him have bled into the record’s mood and warm, glowing production. It's there in the gently strummed mandolin that floats in on Southern Rain, the deft finger picking on the title track, the
sighing pedal steel that glides through This Time and the slapback echo and crackling guitar lines that make I Can Burn Alone sound like it could have been cut at Sun Studios. More importantly, it provides the threads that run
through Hearts That Strain that make it feel like more than the sum of its parts. Rather than be an album to dip in and out of, it’s an organic whole that from
the moment you press play you have to see it out to the final note.“I just like putting out records,” reflect Bugg with characteristic understatement. “I like making albums, I like listening to albums. If you listen to a lot of those classic records throughout each track you can tell that it’s recorded in the same place. It’s nice to have that consistency.” It seems reports of the album’s death have been greatly exaggerated.

Singer-songwriter. Co-producer. Multi-instrumentalist. Lera Lynn juggles multiple roles on Resistor, an album that finds the Nashville transplant embellishing her Americana roots with a mix of spacey, left-of-center rock and experimental pop-noire.

Following the 2014 release of her critically-acclaimed sophomore release, The Avenues, Lynn spent 2015 in a creative whirlwind, kicking off the year with an appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman and, months later, wrapping things up with a 39-date headlining fall tour. Along the way, she also played a role in shaping the dark direction of True Detective's second season, both appearing in the popular HBO series as a barroom singer and contributing a handful of original songs to the show's soundtrack. The response was overwhelming. True Detective's teaser trailer, which featured a clip of Lynn's "The Only Thing Worth Fighting For" (co-written with Rosanne Cash and T Bone Burnett), racked up more than 35 million views in a matter of months, giving Lynn the assurance that a wide audience did, indeed, exist for her brand of otherworldly music.

Resistor at once embraces the darker and more provocative sides of Lynn's songwriting. Moody and muscular, it pairs Lynn's voice — a warm, anchoring instrument that sweeps its way through all 10 songs — with the deep-seated rumble of baritone guitars, the atmospheric swirl of keyboards, and the gauze of her own double-tracked harmonies. Lynn and her co-producer, Joshua Grange, play nearly every instrument on the album, which was tracked during a series of spontaneous, experimental recording sessions in Nashville. While The Avenues couched Lynn's voice in layers of pedal steel and other folky instruments, Resistor takes a different approach, focusing on texture rather than twang.

From the percussive pulse of "Shape Shifter" to the greasy, slow-motion strut of "Little Ruby," Resistor finds Lynn in the captain's chair, confidently steering her ship into uncharted waters. "Drive," the album's most propulsive track, conjures up images of late-night road trips through the American desert, while songs like "Fade Into the Black" and "For the Last Time" sway and swoon, occupying the intersection where slow dances, lullabies and the soundtrack of David Lynch's "Blue Velvet" all connect. An independent album in every regard, Resistor was funded and created not by a big-budget label, but by a songwriter who continues to maintain complete control over her art. It's the sound Lera Lynn has always heard in her head, and never has that sound been more clearly presented than it is here.

“Resistor has this otherworldly quality to it, this darkness, this sense of atmosphere and space,” says Lynn. “We used a lot of baritone guitar, which at once roots and spears through everything, with the vocals floating above and around. There's a slow-burning intensity that at times sounds a little spooky. It's creepy and lovely."

Lynn gained respect early in her career with her 2011 LP release, Have You Met Lera Lynn? The collection included her song “Bobby, Baby,” which won Merlefest’s 2011 Chris Austin Songwriting Competition (an honor she shared with Gillian Welch and Tift Merritt) and best alternative country song at the Independent Music Awards. Following the album’s release, she walked away with best country artist honors at Athens’ Flagpole Music Awards.

Lera Lynn followed up the debut album with a hair-raising cover of June Carter Cash’s classic “Ring of Fire,” recently heard on the hit TV show Pretty Little Liars, backed with the original “Don’t Make Me Wait.” With her 2014 EP release, Lying in the Sun, Lynn illustrates her versatility even further, doing much of the playing and even engineering and producing.

She made her national TV debut on the “Late Show with David Letterman,” in January, 2015 ending with David saying, “Beautiful, remember you heard it here first”. In addition Lera performed on numerous radio shows across the country including NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor as well as sessions on NPR World Café, NPR Mountain Stage, Acoustic Café, and Sirius XM’s The Loft.

In 2014, Lynn self-released her sophomore album, The Avenues, which continues to receive praise and critical acclaim from many sources. The album was covered by NPR’s popular “All Things Considered,” and appeared in the “Top 50 Albums of the Year” from American Songwriter (ranking #14), Rolling Stone, Huffington Post and numerous other “Best Albums of the Year” lists.

Since 2012, Lera Lynn has experienced an incredible run of touring, performing in listening rooms, concert halls, and festivals in North America and the UK which included stops at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, showcases at the Americana Music Fest, Stagecoach Festival and the Cambridge Folk Festival. Lera ended 2015 with a 38 city headlining tour taking her coast-to-coast. If you catch Lera performing live these days, it will be with her ace band or on the rare occasion, playing as a duo with Grange. Either way, you’ll see a natural in action. “My favorite part of this job is performing in a live setting, and seeing the potential to move people through music.” Lynn’s shows are intimate regardless of venue type and feature songs spanning from her earliest recordings to the most current, including some unexpected covers.

Over the course of five years, with three albums, a self produced EP and a Soundtrack under her belt, this fiercely independent musician has developed into a distinguished and multi talented artist. “I think I’m just growing into myself a little bit—embracing whatever it is that makes me who I am as an artist and person. That comes with age, too. As you get older you feel more comfortable with being yourself. I think the new record is going to be even more of an illustration of whatever it is that I have to offer that’s unique.”

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