Countrysides, Cracker. According to the liner notes, Cracker spent several months touring as a country band called Ironic Mullet. This CD is a result of that experiment. Every Cracker CD has a couple of tunes with a little country flavor. With this one, every song on the CD (with one exception) is a cover of a classic country tune. They are all awesome. I love this CD. For Cracker fans, this is a sure winner, but even alt-country fans who haven’t given Cracker a shot in the past should give it a chance.
Just An American Boy, Steve Earle. This is a live, two-CD album. It covers live material from 2002(?) and 2003. It sounds like he must have made a bluegrass tour at some point that I missed. I think the rest of the material is from the same tour as the show I caught in Dallas. The CD suffers from poor sound quality in places but that doesn’t diminish my enjoyment of it in the least. The album’s got a ton of great tracks as well as a fair amount of the chattering that Steve does in-between songs. There’s a pretty funny part where some guy yells out, “Copperhead Road!” and Steve Says, “Dude, do you really think I’m not going to play that? I’ll bet you ten bucks you won’t be awake when I do.” Two thumbs up.
March 16-20 1992, Uncle Tupelo. This is Uncle Tupelo’s all-acoustic third album. I haven’t got tired of listening to it yet. Several of the tracks are on 89/93: An Anthology but I’d heard so much about the album I had to get it. It did not disappoint.
A.M., Wilco. Other than Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, this may be my favorite Wilco album. “Casino Queen” rocks. “Passenger Side” is awesome as well. Actually, I can’t think of one that isn’t good. I’ve listened to this one repeatedly for days on end.
Bourbonitis Blues, Alejandro Escovedo. I liked A Man Under the Influence but it isn’t one that I play all of the time. So, when I saw Bourbonitis, I decided to give Alejandro another try. I liked this one much better. It’s not as mellow and much more bluesy.
Nocturama, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds. I bought this one song unheard. Or at least song unremembered. I think I may have heard a track or two on Spinner or maybe I saw something in No Depression. In any case, I think this one is an acquired taste and I haven’t acquired it yet.
Elephant, White Stripes. Although tempted, it’s probably a good idea not to listen to alt.country 100% of the time. The White Stripes offer an aural sorbet of sorts. “Ball and Biscuit” is probably my favorite.
Mother’s Milk, Red Hot Chili Peppers. For some reason, I didn’t get in to the Red Hot Chili Peppers until Californication. When I got that album, I realized I was a latent Chili Peppers fan. Ever since then, I’ve added a Chili Peppers CD every now-and-then.
Baby I’m Bored, Evan Dando. Evan Dando was the lead singer of the Lemonheads. I was a huge fan of the Lemonheads before they broke up so I decided to give Evan’s solo CD a try. If you’re an old fan, you’ll like it, but it’s not a must-have. A lot of the tracks sound the same. Maybe I was expecting too much.