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  • World Gone Wrong World Gone Wrong Quick View

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    World Gone Wrong

    Import

    World Gone Wrong is the 29th Bob Dylan studio album, released in 1993. It was Dylan's second consecutive collection of only traditional folk songs, performed acoustically with guitar and harmonica. The songs tend to deal with darker and more tragic themes than the previous outing, Good As I Been To You.


    World Gone Wrong is an exceptional album, boasting an exceptional set of songs given performances so fully realized that they seemed like modern protest songs. Much of this record is fairly obscure to anyone outside of dedicated folk fans; Delia (covered by Johnny Cash the following year) and Stack-A-Lee are the most familiar items, yet they're given traditional readings, meaning that the latter doesn't quite seem like Stagger Lee.


    But even if these are traditionalist, they're spirited and lively renditions, and Dylan seems more connected to the music than he has in years. That sense of connection, plus the terrific choice of songs, makes this one of his best, strongest albums of the second half of his career.

    1. World Gone Wrong
    2. Love Henry
    3. Ragged & Dirty
    4. Blood In My Eyes
    5. Broke Down Engine
    6. Delia
    7. Stack A Lee
    8. Two Soldiers
    9. Jack-a-roe
    10. Lone Pilgrim
    Bob Dylan
    $34.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • All Hope Is Gone All Hope Is Gone Quick View

    $26.99
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    All Hope Is Gone

    All Hope Is Gone is Slipknots first #1 album and it has brought the group to new heights. The band headlined the inaugural Mayhem festival, embarked on their most successful world tour yet, including a stop at the legendary Madison Square Garden and had two top 10 singles. 2009 is the bands 10th anniversary and is poised to be one of the most exciting of their career.


    The fourth release from the hard rock machine from Des Moines, IA, is more of a statement than a record. Corey Taylor comments, Every album we have made is a statement about that space in time. I think this era is the most mature, most beautiful and the most powerful. We have made an album that will show the road behind, the road ahead, and where we are as men. I think it's the best thing I've ever made. And I challenge anyone to prove me wrong. The album blends elements of 2004's Vol 3: (The Subliminal Verses) and 2001's Iowa, while adding a perspective, freshness and depth that only three years apart can bring. All Hope Is Gone was recorded this in Slipknot's home state and is co-produced by the band and Dave Fortman.

    1. Execute
    2. Gematria (The Killing Name)
    3. Sulfur
    4. Psychosocial
    5. Dead Memories
    6. Vendetta
    7. Butchers Hook
    8. Gehenna
    9. This Cold Black
    10. Wherein Lies Continue
    11. Snuff
    12. All Hope Is Gone
    Slipknot
    $26.99
    Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • The Cookbook (Pre-Order) The Cookbook (Pre-Order) Quick View

    $24.99
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    The Cookbook (Pre-Order)

    With The Cookbook, the innovative Missy Elliott proves to the masses she is a musical mad scientist whose artistic abilities are unparalleled and without peer. Elliott is a quadruple threat: rapper, singer, songwriter and producer; add that to her woman-empowered lyrics and Missy's ability to be a musical and mental role model is inarguable. As a producer, Missy Elliott knows how to build a great project by incorporating the best talent available, an easy task since so many want to work with her. Not surprisingly, The Cookbook is filled with a world-class guest list.

    That very large list includes American Idol winner Fantasia , cRunk&B queen Ciara , old-school rapper Slick Rick , dancehall sensation M.I.A. (on the drumline-heavy Bad Man) and the current queen of soul, Mary J. Blige . In a reversal of roles, My Struggles finds Missy singing Ya'll don't really know my life, y'all don't really know my struggles while Mary J. raps over a sample of herself from What's The 411. One unexpected surprise is Missy sings out more than on previous releases. The bare-bones Remember When is a definite standout, a 70's-inspired slow jam highlighted by her honest lyrics, sweet falsetto and jazz-affected tones. The beautiful melancholy of Teary Eyed is another standout, an amen-inducing testament to a relationship gone wrong and the beginning of the healing process.

    To hear Missy sing with full rawness and no bravado is a further testament to her talents and will likely bring an even larger audience into her fold. - Denise Sheppard

    1. Joy
    2. Partytime
    3. Irresistible Delicious
    4. Lose Control
    5. My Struggles
    6. Meltdown
    7. On & On
    8. We Run This
    9. Remember When
    10. 4 My Man
    11. Can't Stop
    12. Teary Eyed
    13. Mommy
    14. Click Clack
    15. Time And Time Again
    16. Bad Man
    Missy Elliott
    $24.99
    Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed PRE-ORDER Buy Now
  • Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 (Awaiting Repress) Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 (Awaiting Repress) Quick View

    $31.99
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    Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 (Awaiting Repress)


    The Elvis Presley/Friday Music 180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl Series Continues!


    Celebrate The 55th Anniversary Of 50,000,000 Elvis Fans Can't Be Wrong!


    First Time Audiophile Vinyl & Gatefold Cover Presentation!!!


    Mastered Impeccably By Joe Reagoso And Manufactured At R.T.I.


    Elvis Aaron Presley was born during the Great Depression into a poor family in Mississippi. They moved to Memphis during the early fifties, and
    as a struggling young truck driver, Elvis cut some demos as a gift for his beloved mother Gladys. These initial songs, of which he had only paid a few
    dollars to record, would become the catalyst that would kick-start the beginnings of a soon to be worldwide superstar unlike the world has ever known.


    The folks at RCA Victor knew that this young fellow named Elvis was destined for superstardom. They quickly signed the legend to a long-term
    deal, and his first RCA single Heartbreak Hotel forever etched "The King Of Rock And Roll" trademark to his name. He would eventually become the
    most successful solo artist of all time!


    For the remainder of the 1950's, Elvis Presley would release several more hit albums, smash singles and movies before spending time in the
    Army. Ever proving that he was indeed on top of his game, RCA Victor awarded their superstar artist and his fans with the King's second greatest hits
    collection Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2, also known as 50,000,000 Elvis Fans Can't Be Wrong.


    Featuring a treasure trove of his most familiar top charting hit singles Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 went on to become one of his most
    memorable titles in his huge arsenal of masterful rock and roll albums, as well as one of the most copied album covers of all time.


    Thanks to his finest rock smashes like Wear My Ring Around Your Neck, A Fool Such As I, I Got Stung and A Big Hunk O' Love, this collection of
    Elvis Presley's biggest hits were just what the fans were screaming for, and the entire album was built around the framework of his rocking trademark
    sound. The 1959 album also was another blockbuster for The King as it topped the upper rungs of the pop charts, making this one of his biggest
    albums of his career as well as one of his most revered. Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 truly proved once again that his career was unlike any other in
    music history.


    Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 also included some of his finest ballads like Don't, My Wish Came True and the soulful Doncha' Think It's Time,
    plus more top rock and roll hits like I Need Your Love Tonight, and I Beg of You. In total, the album showcases ten important Elvis Presley hit recordings
    which have truly gone on to become definitive classics by any measure of popular music.


    In honor of the Man, the Music, the Legend, the King Of Rock And Roll, Friday Music is very proud and honored to announce the first time limited
    55th Anniversary Edition 180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl release of the RCA Victor classic Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 - 50,000 Elvis Fans Can't Be Wrong
    by Elvis Presley.


    As another installment in our exciting Elvis Presley 180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl Series, we are pleased to present this masterwork in all its high
    fidelity glory. Mastered impeccably from by Joe Reagoso at Friday Music Studios and manufactured at R.T.I., Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 will be a
    much anticipated first time audiophile dream release for Elvis fans everywhere!


    For a limited time only, we are also including a rare first time gatefold artwork presentation including the original 1959 artwork elements and
    rare picture sleeve art in the inside gatefold . As usual, we are also enclosing a poly bag to protect your album cover and poly lined sleeve to help keep
    your Elvis vinyl in mint shape.


    Elvis Presley's Elvis' Gold Records Volume 2 A history making rock album from an historic legend, an original monophonic first time audphile dream release first time gatefold cover is now an audiophile vinyl dream come true From your friends at Friday Music

    1. I Need Your Love Tonight
    2. Don't
    3. Wear My Ring Around Your Neck
    4. My Wish Came True
    5. I Got Stung
    6. One Night
    7. A Big Hunk O' Love
    8. I Beg of You
    9. (Now And Then There's)
    10 Fool Such As I
    11. Doncha' Think It's Time
    Elvis Presley
    $31.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
  • Speed Of Darkness Speed Of Darkness Quick View

    $16.99
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    Speed Of Darkness

    Speed of Darkness, the follow-up to 2008's Float is punk ensemble Flogging Molly's fifth and arguably most important album to date. In the words of lead singer/songwriter Dave King, It wasn't the album we set out to write. It became the album we had to write. Speed of Darkness, produced by Ryan Hewitt (RHCP, The Avett Brothers) was written in Detroit, MI and takes a hard-nosed look at the economic collapse in the U.S. and the causes and the direct effect it has had on everyday people. The Motor City serves as the album's muse and a painful example of what has gone wrong. While Speed of Darkness attacks much of the greed and ignorance responsible for where we are, the album also delivers a message of hope, humanity and the resilience of mankind.


    From their beginnings as a raucous pub band in Los Angeles in the late 1990's, the band has worn their blue collar ethos proudly and loudly, most notably during their incredible live performances. And now, as the country and the rest of the world rise up to recover and rebuild, never has that ethos been more apparent and important than on Speed of Darkness. The album, like Flogging Molly itself, is a testament to youth and resilience, to growing old and the wisdom of scars, and yet for all of the record's darkness and the speed with which it descends, the ultimate theme is one of light: we can preserve and we will.

    1. Speed of Darkness

    2. Revolution
    3. The Heart of the Sea
    4. Dont Shut Em Down
    5. The Powers Out
    6. So Sail On
    7. Saints & Sinners
    8. Present State of Grace
    9. The Cradle of Human Kind
    10. Oliver Boy (All of Our Boys)
    11. A Prayer For Me In Silence
    12. Rise Up

    Flogging Molly
    $16.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Such Jubilee (Awaiting Repress) Such Jubilee (Awaiting Repress) Quick View

    $19.99
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    Such Jubilee (Awaiting Repress)

    After the breakout critical success of Mandolin Orange's Yep Roc debut, This Side of Jordan, you'd expect the relentless onslaught of touring that accompanied it to seep into the writing of the North Carolina duo's follow-up. You'd expect the sound to reflect long days on the road, long nights onstage, unfamiliar cities, countless miles. You'd expect the classic "road record." But you'd be wrong. "All of these songs are definitely a product of being on the road," says multi-instrumentalist/singer Emily Frantz of Mandolin Orange's gorgeous new album, Such Jubilee, "but they're not about the road." "They're about home," explains song-writer/multi-instrumentalist/singer Andrew Marlin. "Not because we were missing it, but because when you're gone so much, you start realizing what you have and what's waiting for you. You realize there's this place to come back to at the end of the journey, and that's where a lot of these songs come from." Such Jubilee is a record about home, both the place and the idea. Some days it's a safe, warm, loving refuge from the world outside. Other days it's cold and empty and too quiet. Either way, it's always waiting for you at the end of the road.
    1. Old Ties and Companions
    2. Settles Down
    3. Little Worlds
    4. Rounder
    5. From Now On
    6. Jump Mountain Blues
    7. That Wrecking Ball
    8. Blue Ruin
    9. Daylight
    10. Of Which There Is No Like
    Mandolin Orange
    $19.99
    Vinyl LP + CD - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
  • Condolences (Gray w/Black Splatter) Condolences (Gray w/Black Splatter) Quick View

    $29.99
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    Condolences (Gray w/Black Splatter)

    Pressed On Gray Vinyl With Black Splatter


    A grimly glamorous ghoul who first slithered from the cobwebbed shadows of Charlotte, North Carolina, in the early 90s, WEDNESDAY 13 has firmly established himself as the world's premier purveyor of balls-out horror punk insanity. With a vivid and vile imagination that has endeared him to countless fans of riff-driven macabre over the last two decades, he has been one of rock's most prolific protagonists, spreading his credo of grave-robbing rock 'n' roll and Hallowe'en debauchery around the globe and unleashing a seemingly endless stream of blood-spattered albums and EPs.


    "All my favorite stuff, like KISS and ALICE COOPER and TWISTED SISTER, those guys set the bar pretty high," he states. "I always wanted to do something in the worlds of those bands. That's the blueprint. It had to be as outrageous and crazy as that and I wanted to be on someone's wall one day and have their parents say 'Oh my god, what is that?' The formula's still there from when I started doing it as a kid and started wanting to be in a band. It's just GI Joe and Dracula!"


    After several years of sharpening his creative teeth, WEDNESDAY 13 emerged from the fetid crypt of obscurity with his band FRANKENSTEIN DRAG QUEENS FROM PLANET 13, those masters of snotty schlock rock that released an astonishing five studio albums and six EPs between 1996 and 2002. Always the leader of the revolting pack, WEDNESDAY 13 then became a bona fide international rock star as frontman for the MURDERDOLLS, his collaboration with SLIPKNOT's Joey Jordison. The band took the world by storm, with Europe and the UK, in particular, succumbing to the feral charms of 2002 debut album, »Beyond The Valley Of The Murderdolls«; a raucous eruption of big tunes and bad attitude that noisily redefined the horror punk genre. After MURDERDOLLS went on an extended hiatus in 2004, WEDNESDAY 13 embarked on a widely lauded solo career that again provided him with an outlet for his relentless outpouring of fiendish musical and lyrical ideas. Albums like »Transylvania 90210« (released by Roadrunner in 2005), »Fang Bang« and »Skeletons« all cemented our pallid hero's reputation as the bastard son of ALICE COOPER and THE MISFITS, while his outlaw country project, BOURBON CROW and one-off glam metal vehicle, GUNFIRE 76 proved that he had sufficient versatility to survive outside the graveyard and abattoir.


    MURDERDOLLS reconvened in 2010 for the vicious »Women And Children Last« album and another successful world tour before disappearing once more into the freezing midnight fog, leaving WEDNESDAY to revive his solo career with a few thousand volts of wicked electricity yet more highly praised albums and tours including 2014's scintillating acoustic opus »Undead Unplugged« and the following year's thunderous »Monsters Of The Universe: Come Out & Plague«. However, absolutely nothing that WEDNESDAY has created in the past has even touched upon the horrifying potency and allure of his brand new studio album, »Condolences«.


    Frustrated with the arduous process of releasing his own music, our favorite black-hearted freak has thrown himself and his music into a whirling maelstrom of reinvention. The result is not just the heaviest and most authentically disturbing record of the great man's career but also a huge creative leap forward, neatly encapsulated by the new album's simple and direct title.


    "It's more of a serious WEDNESDAY 13 record, I guess," he says. "The campiness has gone and it's taken a darker vibe. It's definitely not in the camp, sleazy world anymore. The band is visually stronger and that's taken things to a new level. Normally my album titles are parodies of something, like »Women And Children Last«, that's a VAN HALEN album title gone wrong! (laughs) So I wanted to make sure that this record came across as a brand new version of WEDNESDAY 13."


    In musical terms, »Condolences« showcases WEDNESDAY's growing obsession with the world of heavy metal and its endless possibilities for exploring tales of horror and violence. Produced by renowned studio guru Zeuss, new songs like anthemic first single 'What The Night Brings' and the pile-driving 'Blood Sick' still exhibit a dash of B-movie weirdness and are full of WEDNESDAY's trademark twisted lyrics, but where previous albums were rooted in the worlds of punk rock and glam metal, »Condolences« is a full-on modern metal record with gigantic balls and the attitude to match. From the glowering menace of 'Good Riddance' to the grandiose hellishness of the album's 7-minute title track, it's living, breathing, murdering proof that the WEDNESDAY 13 of 2017 means business. And business is mean.


    "The punk rock vibe has left the building and it's become a full-on metal vibe," WEDNESDAY agrees. "I've been the horror-punk guy for years, but this is horror metal. It's just evolution. Over the last ten years, I've become a metalhead for the most part. That second MURDERDOLLS record just amped the whole thing up, and the guys in the band have influenced me with so much other stuff. It's not just me with my SEX PISTOLS, ALICE COOPER and RAMONES records anymore! (laughs) Now I've got my band incorporating everything from death metal to rock'n'roll. It's all across the boards. There are no rules. We can do whatever we want, whatever fits."


    Manifestly the strongest, heaviest and most individual album of his lengthy career, »Condolences« promises to push WEDNESDAY 13 into heavy music's upper echelons once again. With determined plans to tour relentlessly in support of the new record, the future is looking dark, dangerous, exhilarating and wildly, unapologetically theatrical.


    "It's non-stop touring once the record comes out," WEDNESDAY concludes. "We just did our first video for 'What The Night Brings' and the visuals are really cool. I've incorporated a lot of stuff I've been doing live, like this devil character I've been transforming into at shows, and that got worked in. We're taking the music, the imagery and the entire stage show up a level. It's gonna be a full-on theatrical stage production, so I'll be busy as fuck on stage! I've been doing this shit for so many years, I started thinking 'How can I make this fun again?' (laughs)"

    1. Last Rites
    2. What The Night Brings
    3. Cadaverous
    4. Blood Sick
    5. Good Riddance
    6. You Breathe, I Kill
    7. Omen Amen
    8. Cruel To You
    9. Eulogy XIII
    10. Prey For Me
    11. Lonesome Road To Hell
    12. Condolences
    13. Death Infinity
    Wednesday 13
    $29.99
    Colored Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Handwritten (Awaiting Repress) Handwritten (Awaiting Repress) Quick View

    $24.99
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    Handwritten (Awaiting Repress)


    Blue Colored Vinyl


    The late Nashville songwriter Harlan Howard famously defined the ingredients of a great song as three chords and the truth. Every songwriter knows three chords, but laying bare the truth? Now that can be an altogether trickier affair. In January of 2012, The Gaslight Anthem piled into their old tour van and headed across the New Jersey state line for a 14 hour road trip to Nashville on their own quest for the truth. Their destination was 2806 Azalea Place, Nashville, Blackbird Studio, where the New Brunswick quartet had booked five weeks recording time with producer Brendan O'Brien (Bruce Springsteen, Pearl Jam, AC/DC). Their mission: to reconnect with rock 'n' roll in its most feral, pure, stripped-raw form.


    Brian Fallon was thirteen years old when he discovered The Clash's self-titled debut album in the racks of Sound Effects Records in Hackettstown, New Jersey: the owner of the store promised the young teenager that the record would change his life. He wasn't wrong. But there was a time, not so very long ago, when The Gaslight's Anthem frontman had grown weary of the sound of electric guitars. After three albums of soulful, impassioned, hearts-on-fire punk rock, Sink Or Swim (2007), The '59 Sound (2008) and American Slang (2010), Fallon needed a change of pace, a change of scenery.


    And so, in January of 2011, together with TGA guitar tech Ian Perkins, he formed The Horrible Crowes, a darkly melancholic side-project inspired by his love of The Afghan Whigs, Tom Waits and PJ Harvey. After the band's acclaimed debut album Elsie dropped in September, Fallon joined fellow punk rock troubadours Chuck Ragan, Dan Andriano (Alkaline Trio) and Dave Hause (The Loved Ones) on the acoustic Revival Tour, airing stripped-down versions of Gaslight Anthem and Horrible Crowes songs to packed rooms across Europe. And then he returned home to New Jersey and Gaslight, re-energized, renewed and ready to make a full-tilt rock 'n' roll record again.


    After six weeks of that there's nothing you want to hear more than a Marshall stack turned all the way up, he says with a laugh. The result is Handwritten, the most committed, affecting and compelling album of The Gaslight Anthem's career to date. Introduced by muscular lead-off single 45, which received it's world premiere on BBC Radio 1 as Zane Lowe's Hottest Record In The World on April 30, it finds the Jersey boys in inspired form, decanting '60's soul, '70's stadium rock, '80s hardcore and '90's grunge into eleven white-knuckle, blue-collar everyman anthems. Fallon likens its incandescent electrical storms to Tom Petty songs (being) played by Pearl Jam. Put more simply, it's a supercharged American rock 'n' roll classic.


    We've taken everything we do and gone to 10 with it, explains Fallon. This is definitely the Gaslight Anthem record I would want next, if I were a fan. American Slang was cool, but this sounds like a band who has plugged back into the electric socket again. I think these songs are the closest thing to what we should have always sounded like, adds guitarist Alex Rosamilia. We just hadn't figured out yet how to play it right.


    Fallon credits Brendan O'Brien for capturing the raw, live-off-the-floor feel of Handwritten. Fine-tuned in the living room of the small rental house the band shared in Nashville, its eleven tracks were recorded with the whole band eyeball-to-eyeball in one room at Blackbird, vibing off one another's energy. The electricity in the recordings is tangible. Brendan taught us a ton about songwriting and recording as a band, Fallon notes. The whole experience was amazing. That's the guy that recorded Pearl Jam, that's the guy that recorded Bruce Springsteen, that's the guy that did Rage Against The Machine; and that's the guy you want to say 'It's good', because when he says it's good, that's when it's good.


    The purity of O'Brien's stark, unadorned recording process served to inspire Fallon's approach to the lyrical themes on Handwritten too. Where previous Gaslight Anthem albums evoked deathless images of Americana, all Cadillacs, jukeboxes, Ferris wheels and wistful, romanticized vignettes of star-struck lovers disappearing into the great wide open, Handwritten is rooted in Fallon's own experiences, lending the record a more immediate, emotional edge. Now I am no angel but I got nothing to hide, the singer rasps on the brooding grunge-noir of Too Much Blood. Can you say the same thing for yourself tonight?


    It's supposed to be a letter to whoever is listening, says Fallon. Like, this is what we got beat up by and maybe you did too. There's so many things that I just never wrote about, real personal stuff that I just wasn't ready to talk about yet. Now I think being an adult I have some reflection on it. We wanted to look back on the music that we first found when we were in high school. The truth is, if you're my age, you were listening to Peal Jam and Nirvana and Soundgarden. When that music came out these were guys that we could relate to. They weren't the biggest bands in the world by accident.


    And it's no accident either that with Handwritten, the Gaslight Anthem themselves sound built to take on the world. After years paying their dues in the punk rock underground, their major label debut is assuredly the work of a young band who know their time is now. And their laidback, charismatic frontman is ready. I've always been ready for arenas, Fallon smiles. I've just been waiting for them to catch up to me. I want to play Giant Stadium, I always wanted to be a major label, major league band. If I can be the kid that's on the cover of Time magazine, I'll take it. And I'll buy you a drink while I'm at it.

    1. 45
    2. Handwritten
    3. Here Comes My Man
    4. Mulholland Drive
    5. Keepsake
    6. Too Much Blood
    7. Howl
    8. Biloxi Parish
    9. Desire
    10. Mae
    11. National Anthem
    Gaslight Anthem
    $24.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
  • Hard Times Are Relative Hard Times Are Relative Quick View

    $18.99
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    Hard Times Are Relative

    Our favorite songs are like one-night stands: passionate or sad, capable of recalling moments with Proustian power. Our favorite artists are lifelong companions: fixtures we turn to for comfort and highs.


    Over the last two decades, Jason Boland and the Stragglers have delivered and become both.


    "We've always just wanted to entertain ourselves and put out music that would be a part of people's lives, not just something passing to them," says Boland. "We want to be something more monolithic." He pauses and grins as he adds, "We're just a social experiment at this point."


    Boland is talking about the deep body of work he's created with his band of jangly honky-tonk aces, the Stragglers--Grant Tracy on bass; drummer and background vocalist Brad Rice; Nick Worley on fiddle, mandolin, and harmonies; and Cody Angel on guitar and pedal steel. Fronted and co-founded by Boland with Tracy and Rice, the band has featured only a handful of other members over the last 20 years, all of whom--whether they're currently Stragglers or not--are like brothers. As they've independently sold more than half a million albums, the outfit has packed iconic dancehalls, theaters, and other big rooms across the country.


    With their new record Hard Times are Relative, Boland and the Stragglers stack the smart, road-ready outlaw country longtime fans have come to expect alongside creative risks that flirt with punk and psychedelic sounds. The 10-song collection is a rare blend of instantly gratifying and rewarding of closer listens--a definitively Stragglers accomplishment. "It's an upbeat album--a lot of fast songs, but it doesn't try to be fast," Boland says with characteristic insight. "It just sits in the pocket."


    No one has combined Woody Guthrie's conscience with Waylon Jenning's panache quite like Boland and the Stragglers. Since debuting in 1999 with the Lloyd Maines-produced Pearl Snaps, the band has matured without taming their refreshing irreverence. "We always joke that we try to take as much as we can from Lloyd and apply it to producing our own records," Boland says. "We've worked with him so many times. The most obvious thing he taught us is: just be musical. Don't hammer through the songs like a garage band all the time."


    That mix of subtle musical sophistication and unruly Oklahoma junkyard pedigree has resulted in some of the best independent honky tonk in recent memory. "You just have to be where you are--keep plugging away and doing the best you can at any moment," Boland says, reflecting on their career thus far. "For a bunch of slackers [like us], that's not too terribly tough."


    Co-produced by the Stragglers, David Percefull, and Adam Odor, Hard Times are Relative is the band's ninth studio record. All songs were recorded live to tape and without the use of any computers--now a Stragglers' hallmark. Upbeat steel guitar kicks off album opener "I Don't Deserve You" before Boland's signature baritone thunders in, smooth and stronger than ever. When fellow sly honky-tonk champ Sunny Sweeney joins him in out-front harmonies, the two become the rootsy dream team you never knew you always wanted.


    The album's title track is a masterpiece: an epic story song about a young orphaned brother and sister depending on the land and one another. Rich details layered over strings paint a scene that's compelling and lush. The song has become one of Boland's favorites. "Folk music is hard to write. Country music is hard to write," he says, reflecting on the difficulty of spinning a long tale while keeping it simple and engaging. "When you hit your own little tuning fork in your head, that one is a hard sell, even to me. But I enjoy that song."


    "Right Where I Began" sounds like vintage Stragglers: clever wordplay and muscly guitars ready for two-steppers. Fiddle and vocal showcase "Searching for You" shows off Rice's and Worley's harmonies that are downright divine. Crunchy guitars drive "Dee Dee OD'd" as Boland offers another round of wry observations. Easy gem "Going Going Gone" makes a solid argument for fiddle in rock-and-roll as Boland deftly turns a baseball metaphor into a classic leaving song.


    Gorgeous waltz "Do You Remember When" bemoans some of modern life's emphasis on disposability and the dismissal of heritage. Rollicking "Tattoo of a Bruise" picks up the same idea, and is tongue-in-cheek country doo-wop, fueled by fiddle, steel, and drums. "I'm not judging anybody," Boland clarifies. "Our music has always called it like we see it, right or wrong, smarter or dumber."


    Praise for the past but acknowledgement of nostalgia's limitations is a career-long theme for Boland, and one that this record continues to carry. "We don't want to lose the chili recipes and the Schroeder Halls because people are moving on to faster, louder, and newer," he says. "But instead of just hemming and hawing, remembering what's old and gone, we want to have new experiences within those frameworks--make memories with what's left of the good stuff."


    With lines like "Empty pockets don't mean you need money / It's just another place to put your hands / And focus on that rock you've been kicking / One day it's going to be a grain of sand," "Predestined" challenges listeners as it soothes. The song is a lyrical victory for Boland, who's long-since become a master of distilling heady ideas into digestible nuggets.


    Penned by Oklahoma music godfather Randy Crouch, "Grandfather's Theme" serves as the album's climactic closer. Attacked with psychedelic ferocity by the band, the song picks up the record's recurring concepts of the ground's insistence on shifting, inevitability, and our complex relationship with the past. Stripped down as Boland sings, the song soars off into a trippy, robust jam-band send-off--a serious triumph especially considering it's a defiantly analog recording. "We're fighting the digital world because they can make it so huge," Boland says, discussing the balancing act of filling out songs while letting them breathe. "I'm really proud if what we did."


    As he mulls over where the Stragglers have been and where they're headed, Boland comes back to one idea over and over again: he and his band are who they are, and with that genuineness comes grit, beauty, and staying power. "We're fortunate that we're not trying to fool anybody," he says. "That's what it comes down to. We're all loners but somehow a team. Now that I can look at it all, I can see: it's been fun."


    Here's to the next 20 years.

    1. I Don't Deserve You
    2. Hard Times Are Relative
    3. Right Where I Began
    4. Searching For You
    5. Do You Remember When
    6. Dee Dee OD'd
    7. Going Going Gone
    8. Tattoo of a Bruise
    9. Predestined
    10. Grandfather's Theme
    Jason Boland & The Stragglers
    $18.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • In Absentia (Out Of Stock) In Absentia (Out Of Stock) Quick View

    $33.99
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    In Absentia (Out Of Stock)

    Pressed On 2x 180 Gram Black Vinyl


    Housed In A Gatefold Sleeve


    In Absentia was the band's seventh studio album, first released in 2002, and was the first in a run of 3 albums that for many represent the pinnacle of the band's artistic achievements. It was something of a breakthrough for the band, selling three times more than previous releases. Following on from 2000's Lightbulb Sun it had a distinctly heavier tone, partly due to the addition of legendary drummer Gavin Harrison, and was also their first for major label Lava / Atlantic Records. In Absentia features many of Porcupine Tree's most loved songs including Trains, The Sound of Muzak and Blackest Eyes. While not a formal concept album, many of the songs have common themes related to serial killers, youthful innocence gone wrong, and observations of the modern world, setting a template for many of Wilson's future songs.

    1. Blackest Eyes
    2. Trains
    3. Lips of Ashes
    4. The Sound of Muzak
    5. Gravity Eyelids
    6. Wedding Nails
    7.Prodigal
    8. .3
    9. The Creator Has a Mastertape Heartattack in a Layby Strip the Soul
    10. Collapse the Light Into Earth
    Porcupine Tree
    $33.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Temporarily out of stock
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