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Chris Robinson Brotherhood'
Betty's Self-Rising Southern Blends Vol. 3Chris Robinson Brotherhood's acclaimed live album series, 'Betty's Blends,' returns with 'Volume 3: Self-Rising, Southern Blends.' Recorded and mixed live from the soundboard by legendary Grateful Dead archivist and recording engineer Betty Cantor Jackson, this latest edition captures the CRB on a Southern swing through Atlanta, Raleigh and Charleston in November 2015.
The 3-LP/2-CD set includes original staple CRB material like Clear Blue Sky, Roan County Banjo and "Oak Apple Day," but focuses on the band's sprawling selection of cover material ranging from Allen Toussaint's "Get Out Of My Life Woman" to the Leiber/Stoller classic "I'm A Hog For You," Bob Dylan's "She Belongs To Me" to the Slim Harpo rarity "The Music's Hot." It also marks the first release in the series with current CRB drummer, Tony Leone. In Robinson's own words, "With Betty, we trust her sonic sensibilities and give her the space and freedom to do what the woman does, and what she does is beautiful and unique. It's the stuff rock n' roll dreams and recordings are made of. Viva la Betty!"1. I Ain't Hiding
2. Got Love If You Want It
3. Clear Blue Sky
4. The Music's Hot
5. Roan County Banjo
6. I'm A Hog For You
7. Oak Apple Day
8. Get Out Of My Life Woman
9. Honeysuckle Interlude
11. Tales Of Thunder Teeth
12. Girl I Love
13. She Belongs To Me$69.99Vinyl LP + 2 CD - 3 LPs Sealed Buy Now
REDD-SIL-4075xChris Robinson Brotherhood
Barefoot in the HeadThey say the only people who know true freedom are musicians and gangsters, Chris Robinson says with a laugh. And Bob Dylan said to live outside the law you must be honest. We're living in these anxiety-filled times, in an era of 'no truth,' but what our music represents is this truly honest way of communicating with people, and that's a really freeing thing.
If their stellar new album, 'Barefoot In The Head,' is any indication, freedom suits the Chris Robinson Brotherhood well. The band is in the midst of one of their most prolific periods to date, with a slew of studio and live records coming out amidst a rigorous tour schedule that only seems to fuel their fire even further. 'Barefoot In The Head' finds the band pushing boundaries and breaking new ground with more joy and wonder than ever before. The album showcases the continued growth of Robinson's songwriting partnership with his bandmates (guitarist Neal Casal, drummer Tony Leone, keyboardist Adam MacDougall, and bassist Jeff Hill), while reveling in the kind of playful adventurousness that can only come from five artists tuned in to the same sonic wavelength.
The album opens with the Americana funk of Behold The Seer, which sounds like something of a mission statement for the CRB as Robinson sings, If you want to keep your engine humming / Keep your eyes wide ahead and don't look back. On the dreamy She Shares My Blanket, Robinson crafts cinematic scenes from a winter love affair in the mountains, while elegant pedal steel added by special guest Barry Sless on Blonde Light Of Day casts a warm, romantic haze and Blue Star Woman sounds like T-Rex dressed in overalls living on a West Coast commune. Throughout the album, Robinson and the band deftly intertwine country, blues and psychedelia, even channeling freewheeling 60s' folk on Hark The Herald Hermit Speaks, a breakneck stream of consciousness that blurs the lines between fantasy and reality. On the English psych inspired Glow, which Robinson calls one of the most special things I've ever done in the studio, The CRB are joined by the celebrated sarodist Alam Khan (son of the legendary Ali Akbar Khan).
After six years of solid touring with this band, we can still roll into Fayetteville, AR on a Tuesday night and have the most fun of any musical thing I've ever been a part of, says Robinson. We don't have the weight of responsibility or nostalgia, which means we're in the very psychedelic situation of getting to be totally honest and create everything in the moment. That's freedom.1. Behold the Seer
2. She Shares My Blanket
3. Hark, the Herald Hermit Speaks
4. Blonde Light of Morning
5. Dog Eat Sun
6. Blue Star Woman
7. High Is Not the Top
8. If You Had a Heart To Break
10. Good To Know$21.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP 45 RPM - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
Sweeten The Distance (Awaiting Repress)The first line of the title track on Neal Casal's tenth studio effort Sweeten The Distance says much about where the storied singer/songwriter/guitarist finds himself in his career: Nothing's gonna stop you now, everything you want is coming in good time. After 20-plus years of writing songs, recording albums and touring the world, there's a confidence and patience in his latest work that reveals an artist in full creative flight.
Produced by Thom Monahan (Fruit Bats, Devendra Banhart, Vetiver), Sweeten The Distance is indeed a defining moment in Casal's discography. Rich acoustic textures and sophisticated melodies of songs like Bird With No Name, and Need Shelter and Gyrls of Wynter give way to a psyched-out ambience on White Fence Round House, Feathers for Bakersfield and How Quiet It Got.
The depth of production, with its purposefully layered sounds and oceanic atmospherics, makes Sweeten The Distance as much a multi-dimensional headphone experience as a soul-stirring modern songwriter record. And as such, Casal emerges as an essential voice in the new cosmic California movement.
In addition to his critically acclaimed solo work, Neal Casal made a name for himself as the lead guitarist in Ryan Adams & The Cardinals, with whom he recorded four albums: Easy Tiger, Follow the Lights, Cardinology and III/IV. Currently he serves as a central component of the Chris Robinson Brotherhood with whom he contributes lead guitar and vocal harmonies. Over the last year, Casal also added guitar and vocals to Ryan Adams Ashes & Fire, Fruit Bats Tripper, The Jayhawks Mockingbird Time, Vetiver The Errant Charm and a forthcoming recording by Beachwood Sparks.1. Sweeten The Distance
2. Bird With No Name
3. Need Shelter
4. Let It All Begin
5. White Fence Round House
6. So Many Enemies
7. Feathers For Bakersfield
8. Time & Trouble
9. How Quiet It Got
10. The Gyrls of Wynter
11. Angel and Youre Mine$17.99Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
REDD-SIL-1890xChris Robinson Brotherhood
Anyway You Love, We Know How You FeelThe Chris Robinson Brotherhood have announced the release of their fourth studio album, Anyway You Love, We Know How You Feel, via Robinson's own Silver Arrow Records. The band relocated to northern California for the sessions, recording on the side of a mountain overlooking the foggy Pacific Ocean and channeling the natural majesty of their surroundings into the album's eight sprawling tracks. Having spent the prior two years touring relentlessly, the CRB were road-tested and in peak form to capture their kinetic chemistry and immersive sound, which Uncut Magazine called, " a celebration of how American musical traditions can be at once honored and psychedelically expanded."
"It was an opportunity to see where our expression could take us. For us, when it comes to making records, the looser it gets the better," says Robinson. "It's all about taking our intuition and following it to where our ideas can really manifest themselves. This turned out to be the most spontaneous record I've ever been a part of."
Indeed, when the Chris Robinson Brotherhood entered the studio to begin recording the album, no one knew just what to expect. These would be the band's first recordings with new drummer Tony Leone (Ollabelle, Levon Helm) and their first time producing themselves. Robinson purposely left as much open-ended as possible. Rather than coming into the studio with a collection of finished songs as he had in the past, he would present the group with sketches-a verse and melody here, a chorus and chord progression there-and let the band follow its collective muse to bring the music to life. They'd lean into the improvisational nature that makes their live shows such enthralling spectacles and thrive on the unexpected.
"All it takes is one good, small idea, and then if everyone's focused and in the moment, a few hours later, you can have something that you realize you'll be playing for as long as you're making music," Robinson continues. "I think when everyone's aware that that's the sort of magic that we're looking for. More than any other session that I've ever been a part of, that's how all of these songs were done."
The album kicks off with "Narcissus Soaking Wet," a psychedelic toe-tapper that marks Robinson's first co-write with keyboardist Adam MacDougall. It touches on everything from Dylan and Parliament Funkadelic to psych rock and Chicago rhythm and blues. "Ain't It Hard But Fair" calls to mind the soulful Americana of The Band, while "Oak Apple Day" is a mediation on life in the CRB, and "Forever As The Moon" came together in a stream of consciousness between The CRB's lead guitarist Neal Casal and Robinson. "Leave My Guitar Alone" was a song Robinson had been sitting on for nearly 15 years, but only once he presented it to the rest of the band did it roar to life in a way that had eluded him for more than a decade. Some of Robinson's finest writing to date arrives in the album's final minutes, with the country-soul, gospel-tinged closer "California Hymn," which finds him singing "Glory glory hallelujah / It's time to spread the news / Though my good words may sound profane to some."
The Chris Robinson Brotherhood emerged in 2011 by playing close to 50 shows over nine weeks in California before ever leaving the Golden State or officially releasing music. Their introduction on the national stage came in 2012 when they'd release not one, but two acclaimed full-length albums within a few months of each other. Critics hailed their sprawling debut, Big Moon Ritual, as a revelation, with The Independent raving that Robinson had "finally found the ideal vehicle to indulge his taste for 'Cosmic California Music.'" The reviews were similarly ecstatic for its immediate follow-up, The Magic Door, which was praised by Relix as "classic rock in the finest sense." The band's epic tour schedule brought their shimmering acid-Americana around the world for a staggering 118-date tour, firmly establishing the CRB as the new standard-bearers of the psychedelic roots torch. In 2014, they returned to the studio for Phosphorescent Harvest, a masterful collection that showcased the blossoming songwriting partnership between Robinson and Neal Casal. Rolling Stone raved that the album was "electrifying boast[ing] a vintage rock vibe that's at once quirky, trippy, soulful and downright magnetic," and Guitar World called it "a treasure trove of soul that advances the band's bluesy, kaleidoscopic sound."1. Narcissus Soaking Wet
2. Forever As the Moon
3. Ain't It Hard But Fair
4. Give Us Back Our Eleven Days
5. Some Gardens Green
6. Leave My Guitar Alone
7. Oak Apple Day
8. California Hymn$21.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
REDD-SIL-5981xChris Robinson Brotherhood
Phosphorescent HarvestThe CHRIS ROBINSON BROTHERHOOD unveil their third studio album PHOSPHORESCENT HARVEST via Silver Arrow Records. The band--Chris Robinson (lead vocals, guitar), Neal Casal (guitar, vocals), Adam MacDougall (keys, vocals), George Sluppick (drums) and Mark Dutton (bass, vocals)--will also hit the road in conjunction with the album's release.
PHOSPHORESCENT HARVEST is a treasure trove of 10 songs--including several the band road-tested over the last few years--that advances the band's kaleidoscopic sound, which is deeply soulful, rootsy and spacey all at once. There's strong songcraft here, with a free-flowing delivery; it is music that is in no hurry to reach its destination but firmly knows where it is going. From the beginning, the CRB set out to do something different from what they had done before, creating their own scene with a musical prowess, cohesive songwriting and a unified commitment to experimentation, both in the studio and on the road (they've performed over 230 shows since forming in 2011).
The best perspective I have on what's going on in my life--good and bad--is what comes out in the songs, says Chris Robinson. As you move on in time, you get older, you have relationships. Some of them are good, some fail. Friends. Drugs. Life. Death. People come, people go. Songwriting is a completely different emotional response to your life and to what it means, to in some poetic nature, put it out there.
PHOSPHORESCENT HARVEST follows the release of the companion albums Big Moon Ritual (June 2012) and The Magic Door (September 2012) plus last year's live quadruple vinyl Betty's S.F. Blends, Vol 1. The group continues to record with producer Thom Monahan, and Robinson wrote all of the songs with Casal, save for two that are Robinson solo compositions (Tornado, Jump The Turnstiles).
We're really going by the electricity and the vibrations that we can sort of tune in to, Robinson recently told Relix magazine (Jan/Feb '14). There's a psychedelic component to it. That's part of the greasing the wheels of the great cosmic engine, with psychedelic thought and philosophy and action. If you get my drift. He went on to talk about the more rock and roll feel on PHOSPHORESCENT HARVEST, and his overall vision for the Brotherhood: I'm not going to have hit records. I don't write pop songs. But then again, I find a deep need to express myself and how I'm feeling and where I am and where I've been and where I'm going by writing songs. Why change something to make it easier for anyone else, when I think if we stay sincere and keep our energies in a real creative place, then people will wander into our small community, and it maybe would get more popular to tend that garden is a great responsibility. But I want it to grow. Check out the whole Relix feature here.
Rolling Stone editor David Fricke picked the CHRIS ROBINSON BROTHERHOOD as one of his favorites of 2012, and praised their live performance in New York City, saying the singer's acid-country Brotherhood, with ex-Ryan Adams guitarist Neal Casal, were a sublime time onstage and across these two albums, recorded at the same sessions and issued six months apart. The Irving Plaza show was a characteristic live high. In the second set, Robinson steered out of a rattling 'Tough Mama,' from Bob Dylan's Planet Waves, into the long reverie 'Girl on the Mountain,' a song from an earlier side trip, New Earth Mud, given fresh air and a new coat of DayGlo paint (1/30/13).1. Shore Power
2. About a Stranger
3. Meanwhile In The Gods....
4. Badlands Here We Come
5. Clear Blue Sky & The Good Doctor
6. Beggar's Moon
7. Wanderer's Lament
9. Jump The Turnstiles
10. Burn Slow$21.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
Big Moon RitualIn 2011, after more than 20 years of intense gigging and recording, Chris Robinson set off to shape something new, a fresh rock mythology, a breathing kaleidoscopic entity stuffed with chooglin soul, bedrock boogie and shuffling wisdom birthed in intimate clubs and amongst the tall trees of the Golden State and eventually taken nationwide as the Chris Robinson Brotherhood.
What began as an experiment without expectations turned into a 118-show journey for Robinson (lead vocals/guitar), Neal Casal (guitar/vocals), Adam MacDougall (keys/vocals), George Sluppick (drums) and Mark Dutton (bass/vocals) that surprised these seasoned pros as music of unshakable solidity and exuberant reach poured out of them, a New Cosmic California sound with tendrils reaching to the original Fillmore West, Topanga Canyon and outwards towards far horizons.
The music of the Chris Robinson Brotherhood finds its fruition on their debut studio album Big Moon Ritual due out on Silver Arrow/Megaforce Records, to be followed by companion album The Magic Door.
"This music is unashamedly what we're into," says Robinson. "It's not a psych band because you have a Prince Valiant haircut and wear Beatle boots. It's psych because that's where our heads are. We want to make music that blossoms. We want to make music that sounds cosmic."1. Tulsa Yesterday
3. Star Or Stone
4. Tomorrow Blues
5. Reflections On A Broken Mirror
6. Beware, Oh Take Care
7. One Hundred Days Of Rain$16.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
Interludes For The DeadCircles Around The Sun (Neal Casal) was commissioned to compose and record over five hours of original music for the intermissions at the Fare Thee Well shows. There was such a positive response to the music that Rhino US will be releasing it!
Neal Casal is an American guitarist, singer, songwriter, and photographer. First rising to prominence as lead guitar with Rickey Medlocke's Blackfoot from 1988-1993, Neal was best known as a member of Ryan Adams' backing band the Cardinals, with whom he recorded three studio albums, and of whom he was a member from 2005 until 2009. Casal currently plays in the Chris Robinson Brotherhood, and has released twelve solo albums.1. Hallucinate A Solution
2. Gilbert's Groove
3. Farewell Franklins (2nd Cycle)
4. Kasey's Bones
5. Space Wheel$34.99180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
If You Lived Here, You Would Be Home By NowIf You Lived Here, You Would Be Home By Now is the newest release from The Chris Robinson Brotherhood. It features five new songs.1. New Cannonball Rag
2. Shadow Cosmos
3. Roan County Banjo
4. From the North Garden
5. Sweet Sweet Lullaby$19.99Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now