Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit

Thursday

SXSW Records

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit

Here We Rest (Lightning Rod)

Jason Isbell spent a good deal of 2010 at home in northern Alabama, and Here We Rest reflects that in its stories of the folks of Muscle Shoals and Florence affected by the economic downturn. The guitarist's always been good at such character studies, but perhaps because he really understands the predicament his characters find themselves in, his new tunes really shine. He's become a rocker with a sensitive streak, but here he branches out into country soul, with the Tony Joe White swagger of "Heart on a String," and also into bluegrass, with the mandolin-driven "Tour of Duty." These touches are different from his past work, and there are many more throughout, but it's all equally affecting. Few songwriters today write with Isbell's combination of lyrical economy, deep-seated empathy, and masterstroke axe melodies. (Thu., 11pm, Swan Dive)

***

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit
SXSW Records
Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit
Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit (Record Review)

Jim Caligiuri, March 20, 2009

More Music Reviews
Review: Holy Wave, <i>Five of Cups</i>
Review: Holy Wave, Five of Cups
Five of Cups (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Sept. 1, 2023

Review: The Bright Light Social Hour, <i>Emergency Leisure</i>
Review: The Bright Light Social Hour, Emergency Leisure
Emergency Leisure (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Aug. 4, 2023

More by Jim Caligiuri
Carrie Elkin’s Life-and-Death Folk
Carrie Elkin’s Life-and-Death Folk
Her father's death and daughter's birth upped the stakes of the singer's finest work

April 14, 2017

SXSW Music Live: Richard Barone Presents Greenwich Village in the Sixties
SXSW Music Live: Richard Barone Presents Greenwich Village in the Sixties
Soft Boys, Youngbloods, Moby Grape, Brian Jones’ grandson, etc.

March 18, 2017

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle