Critically acclaimed songwriter John Moreland will release his fourth solo album Big Bad Luv on May 5 via 4AD. Big Bad Luv marks a change in Moreland’s sound and outlook on life. With lyrics that are as intense and unfiltered as on his earlier work, Moreland delves into finding peace within. He also branches out sonically on the new album, which is injected with a heavier dose of rock ‘n’ roll. Big Bad Luv was recorded at Fellowship Fall Sound in Little Rock, AR, produced by Moreland and mixed by Tchad Blake (The Black Keys, Tom Waits, Sheryl Crow). The brutal honesty of John Moreland’s singing and songwriting has touched listeners across the country. He silences rooms from dive bars to more recently the historic Ryman Auditorium stage. The simple and eloquent way that he’s able to speak about life rings as true as ever. “John Moreland has a beautifully abraded voice, full of potholesand gravel…” - The New York Times “Moreland sings heartwrenching lyrics in an earthy voice that sounds worn in beyond his 29 years.” - Wall Street Journal
Of the 14 listed cuts on their debut CD, nine were written or co-written by harp player-vocalist Dustin Arbuckle and guitarist-vocalist Aaron Moreland. Covers include Charlie Patton, Fred McDowell, and an excellent, rough-and-tumble version of Bill Withers' 'Use Me.' The no-frills Issues Up Top makes it easy to hear that these guys deliver the goods. What they do isn't fancy, but neither was the music from most of their heroes. With Moreland's mean guitar growl playing off Arbuckle's smart, workaday vocals and harp, and the efficient groove laid down by bassist James Hocutt and drummer David Floyd, the quartet brings more untainted Blues feeling across than many bigger name artists on bigger name labels.
On Flood, Moreland & Arbuckle's debut release, the rootsy, hard-driving group from Kansas takes music itself to places it's never been. Featuring mostly original tunes, Flood presents a dynamic mix of thirteen acoustic and electric songs, each performed with all the subtlety of a passing freight train. Moreland & Arbuckle are traditionalists and innovators at the same time, merging old school Chicago and Delta blues with garage rock sensibilities. While Arbuckle was mostly influenced by the Mississippi blues, traditional country music and bluegrass, Moreland grew up listening to everyone from Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath to Charlie Patton and Muddy Waters.
Putting Concrete Blonde on the shelf, lead singer Johnette Napolitano with guitarist Marc Moreland (ex-Wall of Voodoo), and drummer Danny Montgomery form the trio Pretty & Twisted. Produced by Napolitano, the band's self-titled release is a more polished affair than much of her work with Concrete Blonde, but the familiar lyrical touchstones are all there…