Albums Of The Month – January 2021

Our Top Six Releases

Aaron Lee Tasjan – Photo: LTTL

Top Six Releases

January 2021

Our Top Six Releases

By Rob Dickens

Aaron Lee Tasjan

Tasjan! Tasjan! Tasjan!

New West

5 February 2021

The cool Americana/pop minstrel from East Nashville brings us another collection of Jeff Lynne (ELO and The Traveling Wilburys)-inspired glitter. But beneath the beautiful lush and jangly sounds and the excitable title, there’s a lot going on in Aaron Lee Tasjan‘s mind on Tasjan! Tasjan! Tasjan!

The themes here include reported challenges with his label, struggles with self-confidence and anxiety, sexuality, homophobia. But nothing preachy here, the delivery being often tongue-in-cheek, wry observations.

Classic sounds are presented here in a lively, fresh way, taking on a form that no-one else is presenting much today. Co-producer Gregory Lattimer and mixing engineer John Congleton add significantly to the end result.


Via Big Feat PR

Kacy & Clayton and Marlon Williams

Plastic Bouquet

New West

12 December 2020

On the day I write this, New Zealand (Christchurch) crooner Marlon Williams turns 30. Already possessing a growing and impressive musical CV, he heard Canadian duo Kacy & Clayton and instinctively recognised the benefits of working with the Saskatoon couple (Kacy Anderson and Clayton Linthicum) who already had numerous albums to their name.

The product of their collaboration is Plastic Bouquet which was conceived during an immensively creative Canadian winter – eleven songs in three weeks. The album was produced by Anderson and Williams and it’s their striking voices weaving together with the distinctive guitar playing of Linthicum that is a joy.

Plastic Bouquet oozes with classic country and folkie charm.


Lisa Richards

I Got A Story


13 November 2020

Hailing from Australia’s national capital Canberra, Lisa Richards has applied herself remarkably with I Got A Story, her seventh outing. The album grew out of a Folk Alliance conference in Los Angeles. The event’s collaborative and supportive spirit turned out to be just the impetus she needed to boldly throw herself into committing to her own colourful story.

The lyrics are raw and oh-so-honest. Memories of sexual abuse, early drug use, the inability to hold down a job, rehab and depression. The journey since then, the inner resolve and ability to refuse to let these events define her, is stirring.

Every song on a I Got A Story is beautifully crafted and arranged.


Via Stuart Coupe Publicity

Melody Moko

Two Kids & A Radio


11 September 2020

Alt. country singer Melody Moko‘s Two Kids & A Radio came to my attention a little late. Since its release, it has garnered three Australian Golden Guitar Awards (and three chunky ones at that – Alt Country Album of The Year, Female Artist of the Year and New Talent of The Year). The nominations and chart success were a godsend because Moko was poised to go on the road with what would have been a successful tour with the new material in a pre-COVID world.

The album was recorded in Nashville with famed producer Neilson Hubbard and features the renowned Fats Kaplin (Kaplin Welch and Kane, John Prine).

The melodies here are excellent, drawing in the listener, siren-like. It’s a mature and polished record.


Via Stuart Coupe Publicity

Rod Abernethy

Normal Isn’t Normal Anymore

Downstairs Records

5 February 2021

I have already posted a full review of Rod Abernethy‘s Normal Isn’t Normal Anymore – see link below.

Another award-winning songwriter and a fine guitarist to boot, the album features some timely insights about modern life, delivered in crystal-clear fashion.




Sturgill Simpson

Cuttin’ Grass Vol 2 – The Cowboy Arms Sessions

High Top Mountain/Thirty Tigers

11 December 2020

Sturgill Simpson surprised us all with a bluegrass reworking of twenty of his songs in Cuttin’ Grass Vol 1 – The Butcher Shoppe Sessions presented impeccably with a hot bluegrass band, infusing his songs with a complete and appropriate retelling.

Another unexpected turn. Cuttin’ Grass Vol 2 – The Cowboy Arms Sessions arrives hot on its predecessor’s heels and continues the magic of his songs being reinterpreted musically with what can only be described as a band made in heaven.

The only qualm? There are only twelve songs on Vol. 2.


Via Jo Corbett Publicity



Our Top Six Releases

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Author: Rob Dickens

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