Thursday, April 19, 2007

In House #1852: New Cowboy Junkies, Playing Boise Tonight

Twenty-one years ago, the Cowboy Junkies issued a fairly unassuming debut made up almost entirely of covers, featuring songs by the likes of John Lee Hooker, Bruce Springsteen, Robert Johnson, and others. Whites Off Earth Now!! was marked in its hazy, almost drugged-out take on classic country and blues, the beginnings of a signature sound from a band that has been called "country on valium." Low meets Neil Young might have been an apt descriptor if the band hadn't predated the former. The Junkies released their twelfth studio album earlier this week, entitled At the End of Paths Taken, and while they've certainly branched out and expanded their sound over the past two decades to include rock, pop, and folk, the deliberate pace remains in many cases, not to mention the cool coo of Margo Timmins. The album, however, also continues a recent trend with the band's music to eschew traditional song structure resulting in the kind of extended jams and meditations that are the anti-3-minute-pop songs. One need look no further than the 7-minute plus "Mountain," for proof, as it spreads an atmospheric soundscape over a recording of the Timmins' (Margo and Peter, who are both in the band) father reading from what sounds like it could a personal history piece. It's a long way from Robert Johnson, to be sure, but there are plenty of more traditional moments here, including the electric blues dirge "Cutting Board Blues," and the stunning "Spiral Down." The Cowboy Junkies play the Egyptian Theatre in Boise tonight.

Cowboy Junkies

In House #1852.
Airdate: 4/19/07
Focus: New release from the Cowboy Junkies, At the End of Paths Taken, also playing Boise tonight. Plus, new music from the Golden Smog, Ian Hunter, Grant-Lee Phillips, Patti Smith, and more.

Cowboy Junkies, from At the End of Paths Taken:
  • "Spiral Down" (MP3)


    In House PODCAST #296

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