Wednesday, July 27, 2016

New Music 2016 - Part 43 - Flatt Lonesome - Runaway Train

Good things, like troubles and London buses, come in threes. 
Here is the last in a trio of acts from America that are little known in the UK. The current excitement stateside is that they have fairly recently recorded and released a bluegrass version of the main theme to 'Game of Thrones'.
That's interesting, I suppose, but this is not really about that at all. It is about Flatt Lonesome, the band, and their latest album on which the aforementioned track is not included. It is however quite splendid in its own right and, as bluegrass is in part derived from Celtic tradition, here it is:

Looking and listening beyond that introduction, Flatt Lonesome is an acoustic six-piece composed of extended family and it is based in Tennessee.

Flatt Lonesome - Runaway Train (Mountain Home Music Company, 2 October 2015).

I have been listening to a great deal of modern bluegrass in the last year or so and a sizeable proportion of that is not of US origin. This however is and, while US reviews suggest it is very well received - it is their third LP - it appears to be little known over here.
There are no long songs on this - the twelve tracks run for a total of just 37 minutes. The final, and title track, does however illustrate my assertion that American roots and folk artists have a predilection for writing railroad-related songs, if only used as a metaphor and, despite some claims to that effect, it is not a cover of the Soul Asylum track of the same name!
This is the play list:

Flatt Lonesome - Runaway Train
  • You'll Pay
  • Still Feeling Blue
  • You're the One
  • In the Heat of the Fire
  • Don't Come Running
  • In the Morning
  • Road to Nottingham
  • New Lease on Life
  • Casting All Your Care on Him
  • Mixed Up Mess of a Heart
  • Letting Go
  • Runaway Train
What I did not expect yesterday, UK-time, was this announcement in which Flatt Lonesome features prominently. The nominations for the IBMA 2016 Awards.
IBMA is the International Bluegrass Music Association, just in case you were wondering.
The full list of categories, and the nominations within each of them, is here.

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