In House #1781: New Austin City Limits Live Releases From Neko Case & Johnny Cash
In case you haven't noticed, we're in love with Neko Case. Fresh off of crowning the golden-throated redhead's Fox Confessor Brings the Flood as one of our top five albums of 2006, we get to New West's new issuing of her August, 2003 performance on PBS' Austin City Limits show. The album is the latest in an on going series of Live From Austin, TX releases from the label, all culled from performances on ACL. Past volumes have included the likes of Dwight Yoakam, Willie Nelson, Lucinda Williams, Steve Earle, and Merle Haggard, among others. Case's edition captures her on tour in support of her Blacklisted release backed more than ably by vocalist Kelly Hogan and multi-instrumentalist Jon Rauhouse. The fourteen tracks include material from throughout Case's catalog (including an early take on "Maybe Sparrow," only just released on her latest effort), as well as versions of Bob Dylan's "Buckets of Rain," and Hank Williams' "Alone & Forsaken." Aside from the outstanding sound quality what's most impressive about the performance is undoubtedly Case's singing-- no studio tricks, no pitch adjusters, just pipes like you'll rarely hear.
Also out today from the same series is a January, 1987 Austin City Limits performance from Johnny Cash. The recording captures the man in black in a sort of career-limbo stage, long after mainstream country radio had turned its back on him, but still seven years before he began his late renaissance with producer Rick Rubin and the American recordings. Nevertheless, a downright youthful Cash, without a gray hair on his head, burns through signature tunes like "Ring of Fire," and "Big River," with gusto, elsewhere foreshadowing his nineties work with more traditional selections like "Long Black Veil," and "(Ghost) Riders In the Sky." Also included are covers of John Prine's "Sam Stone," Kris Kristofferson's "Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down," and Tom T. Hall's "I'll Go Somewhere & Sing My Songs Again," in addition to a version of "Where Did We Go Right?" that finds Cash joined by his wife June Carter. Available for the first time after twenty years in the can, Cash's Live from Austin, TX is another fine addition to the legacy of a legend.
In House #1781.
Focus: New Austin City Limits Live releases from Neko Case and Johnny Cash, plus new music from Wayne Hancock, Paula Frazer & Tarnation, and more.
Neko Case's "Behind the House," from her Live From Austin, TX DVD and CD:
Neko Case, from Live From Austin, TX: "Alone & Forsaken" (MP3)
Johnny Cash, from Live From Austin, TX: "Big River" (MP3)
In House PODCAST #236