We had the honor of featuring “The Nashville Sound” from Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit for our June 2017 Record of the Month. It is the sixth studio album by Jason Isbell, credited with the 400 Unit and was officially released in June 2017. The album debuted at number four on the Billboard 200 and earned Jason Isbell his first CMA nomination (Album of The Year) at the 2017 Ceremony.
Jason Isbell is an Alabama native singer-songwriter and guitarist, but resides in Nashville, TN, with his wife and daughter. He released his first album with the 400 Unit in 2009 and they have been making music together ever since.
The vinyl came with a personalized note from our founder and curator, Drew Holcomb:
Note from Drew
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.
1. Last of My Kind
2. Cumberland Gap
4. White Man's World
5. If We Were Vampires
8. Chaos and Clothes
9. Hope the High Road
10. Something to Love