January 4, 2010

there was nowhere I could keep it … it got hard

joe pug - messenger

Well, Joe Pug just did it to me again. I’ve been feeling a little dessicated these last few days, and not much like writing about music (happens to the best of us). And then I heard this new song “Unsophisticated Heart,” and it is just everything I am feeling tonight. I love Joe for this simple honesty; for the incisive accuracy he has with the words he pens, and the ache in his voice as he sings them.

In the same resigned way that Jeff Tweedy’s voice has when it cracks on the line as he covers Radiohead, “If I could be who you wanted….,” Joe’s voice here is so unvarnished so you can see right through to the parts of him that are fragile. I imagine some would say that having an unsophisticated heart is a detriment, and downfall, a liability — and it certainly can feel like it sometimes. But by the time Joe reaches the end of this song, I don’t mind mine at all.

Unsophisticated Heart – Joe Pug

Take a walk on Sunday, it ain’t that hard
take a walk on Sunday, it ain’t that hard

If my thoughts are hard to gather
if I don’t know where to start
it ain’t my mind that matters
for I have an unsophisticated heart

Tried to trust a stranger, it got hard
you know I tried to trust a stranger
it got hard

Now I see things like a soldier
and I’m jealous of the dark
but if my eyes have only gotten colder
I still have an unsophisticated heart

Oh my eyes will hardened, my voice will be guarded
my mind so bewildered and buried in the garden
you may still know me by just one part

I tried to keep your secret, it got hard
There was nowhere I could keep it
it got hard

And there’s one thing that’s for certain
when they come with their dogs and their guards
I can hide behind the thinnest curtains
for I have an unsophisticated heart
for I have
for I….

Joe Pug’s first proper full-length album (after slaying me with two previous EPs) is finally out on February 16th and will be called Messenger.

In the weeks surrounding the album release, Joe is on tour with Justin Townes Earle (for reals) and they come to Denver on my half-birthday February 19th. Yes, we celebrate things like that ’round here, and that show will be a fine way to commemorate another half-year gone.

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  • Wow. What a great voice. From the moment I started listening to these sample songs, I was thinking “Man… that’s got to be the guy from the old Trout Fishing in America CD” (‘Truth Is Stranger Than Fishin’ — one of my favorites). But I google-binged and could find no association. Is it just my ears or were these guys separated at birth?

    Miguel S. — January 4, 2010 @ 7:33 am

  • The Joe Pug/Justin Townes Earle double bill is the first show of 2010 that I absolutely cannot wait for to arrive (25 Feb – tick, tock…)

    Then, the next month, The Low Anthem opens for The Avett Bros. Now that is a great first quarter of 2010!

    jimbo — January 4, 2010 @ 6:12 pm

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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