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07 May 2010 @ 10:54 pm
Bp's Song of the Week #79: Shooter Jennings "Everything Else is Illusion"  
Shooter Jennings is the son of Outlaw Country legend Waylon Jennings. Shooter has released a number of traditional country mixed with rock and blues records, but on his latest release he takes a dramatic left turn into a searing social commentary on where the U.S. may end up in the coming years. That is taken to the extreme, but it definitely offers an interesting listening experience whether or not you believe the message or not. It’s a heavy, pseudo-thematic album featuring Stephen King as a late night DJ spinning songs from the Hierophant catalog as he celebrates his last night on the airwaves.

If you haven’t rolled your eyes yet I applaud you. Seriously though, it’s a really interesting listen and the songs stand on their own without the thematic bit. Yes it gets political, but if you look beyond the political and let the music take you on a ride it’s a brilliant mix of old swampy southern rock and roll with tribute paid to the ‘60s, ‘70s, and a number of musical styles. King’s inclusion is brilliant, it reminds me of some of the finest Dr. Johnny Fever rapping from WKRP in Cincinnati - regardless if you believe what he’s saying or if you don’t, the vibe that he brings to the album is electric.

This is definitely a multiple pass album and that is just musically. Lyrically and thematically you could add another 20 listens to piece together all the political bits, but you don’t have to – I haven’t even gotten to that point yet because the tunes and vibe is good enough for me right now.

Here is a great track with Stephen’s intro (again, put the politics aside and listen to the vibe that is created).

“Everything Else is Illusion”

Here are a couple other great cuts from the album:

God Bless Alabama
Lights in the Sky