“Liv Tyler”‘s the first single off Jersey crew Roadside Graves’ forthcoming You Won’t Be Happy With Me. It follows the excellent (and overlooked) full-length My Son’s Home. I heard a couple of the new songs live in Brooklyn last month and recognized them immediately while listening to the six-song collection a couple weeks later. My favorites are opener “Demons” (“We all, we all have demons / Rise up when we fall…”) the aching female-fronted “Heart,” and the great working-class vignettes “Jail”/”End Of The Day” and a shit-kicking “if we didn’t have to worry about money we’d be alright” anthem named after someone who grew up with a different set of worries. Actually, I like them all: It’s a collection that finds the guys weaving atmospheric drones, female vocals, and a darker spaciousness into the Americana, but they’re still not afraid to spill the whiskey, nod to Kristofferson, and make like Metuchen’s answer to the Jayhawks. As far as the “Liv Tyler” single’s album cover, frontman John Gleason explains:
It’s a picture of my dad and my step-mom in their teens — check out her outfit, all brown cords. My dad had a motorcycle in his teens and then bought one again a few years before he passed away. Strange cycle … false promise of being free. I couldn’t handle more than a moped, I’m afraid…
I think you’d do fine.
Roadside Graves – “Liv Tyler” (MP3)
Look for the “Liv Tyler” single in a couple of weeks. You Won’t Be Happy With Me is out 3/16 via Autumn Tone. The label’s also reissuing the band’s first album If Shaking Up Is All You Want To Do digitally on 2/8 with six bonus songs. While we’re here, take another listen to My Son’s “Work Itself Out.” They also recently stopped by Daytrotter, where you’ll hear a live take on “Liv Tyler.”