Jason Isbell's The Nashville Sound is probably the most anticipated Americana record of 2017 and we are thrilled to bring it to the Magnolia Record Club. Isbell is the South's answer to Bruce Springsteen, with characters that each deserve their own novel, hard luck, down but not yet out, while still creating universal narratives that connect with a larger audience. He also knows how to be a quiet folkie on one song like "Last of My Kind" and full on southern rocker on the next, "Cumberland Gap".
Like Jackson Browne, Springsteen, John Prine, and so many of the greats, he also does a great job of dealing with the political climate through narrative and melody instead of beating people over the head with it. "White Man's Wold" and "Hope the High Road" both go all the way to the valleys of human darkness without killing the dream. "It's not too late", he's singing. "We're all carrying one big burden, sharing one fate."
The name of the album says a lot about Isbell's place in musical landscape. "The Nashville Sound" is in many ways a re-orienting of the way Nashville music sounds. Simple production, a real band, not fireworks or walls of sound like contemporary country. He is literally claiming a new sound for Nashville, one that I obviously align with personally. I think you will see a bunch of Grammy's in his hands come next February.