Valerie June

Pushin' Against a Stone (Concord)

ACL Music Fest 2013 Saturday Reviews

Valerie June

Pushin' Against a Stone (Concord)

Valerie June's official debut manages a tour de force. Born in rural Tennessee between Memphis and Nashville, her music inhabits an extraordinary blend of the country, blues, and soul between the two music scenes and still remains thoroughly modern thanks to co-production from Dan Auerbach. "Workin' Woman Blues" sets the tone, a gnarled twang rooting the tune with the distinctiveness of folk-blues great Elizabeth Cotten before fervent percussion and horns slide in seamlessly to push the song into Afro-pop territory. Sparse banjo and harmonies wind together beautifully on "Somebody to Love," while "The Hour" and "Wanna Be on Your Mind" cut a dark, soulful sway with girl-group swagger, and "Tennessee Time" turns country in a duet with Eric Church. Even then, the wickedly electrified title track and thumping "You Can't Be Told" burst with Auerbach's influence up against the Appalachian spiritual "Trials, Troubles, Tribulation" and devastatingly haunted "Shotgun." Pushin' Against a Stone showcases a stunning and unique new voice. (2:30pm, BMI stage)

****

ACL 2013 Fest

READ MORE
More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Walter Daniels
"Almost Got Hit by a Truck" b/w "My Mind Got Bad", "Voodoo Working" and "Stimulant" b/w "I Get Off on It", "Graveyard Shift" b/w "They Can Only Fill One Grave" (Record Review)

Tim Stegall, Dec. 2, 2016

Texas Platters
Rick Broussard’s Two Hoots & a Holler
Time Has Shown Me (Record Review)

Tim Stegall, Nov. 25, 2016

More by Doug Freeman
Paul Cauthen’s Deep Country Gospel
Paul Cauthen’s Deep Country Gospel
Former Sons of Fathers frontman’s solo debut deals out one of the best country albums of the year

Nov. 25, 2016

Texas Platters
William Clark Green
Live at Gruene Hall (Record Review)

Nov. 25, 2016

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Valerie June, ACL Fest 2013

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES