Cory Branan

Cory Branan

Rebecca Rego (Solo), Rorey Carroll

Sun · April 2, 2017

Doors: 7:30 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

The Southgate House Revival-Revival Room

$12.00 - $15.00

This event is 18 and over

Cory Branan
Cory Branan
ADIOS is Cory Branan’s death record. Not the cheeriest of openings, but like all of Branan’s mercurial work, it’s probably not what you think. As funny and defiant as it is touching and sad, this self-dubbed “loser’s survival kit” doesn’t spare its subjects or the listener.

Not even Branan’s deceased father is let off the hook. In the tender homage “The Vow” he drolly cites his father’s favorite banality “that’s what you get for thinking” as “probably not the best lesson for kids.” For most songwriters that would be the punchline but Branan pushes through words and, in his father’s actions, finds a kind of “genius in the effortless way he just ‘did’.”

Not all the death on ADIOS is literal mortality. “Imogene” is sung from the wreckage of a love that once “poked fun at the pain, stoked the sun in the rain” but ends with the urgent call to “act on the embers, ash won’t remember the way back to fire.”

The trademark lyrical agility is mirrored sonically. Never a genre loyalist, ADIOS finds Branan (much like his musically restless heroes Elvis Costello and Tom Waits) coloring outside the lines in sometimes startling shades of fuzz and twang. While unafraid to play it arrow-straight when called for (“The Vow,” “Equinox,” “Don’t Go”), ADIOS veers wildly from the Buddy Holly-esque rave up “I Only Know” (sung with punk notables Laura Jane Grace and Dave Hause), through the swampy “Walls, MS” to the Costello-like new wave of “Visiting Hours.”

The blistering punk of “Another Nightmare in America” bops along daring listeners to “Look away, look away, move along, nothing to see here” (the song is written from the point of view of a racist killer cop). And as the mourning singer on “Cold Blue Moonlight” shifts from paralysis to panic, the song’s jazzy drone shifts to an almost Sabbath fury. The tonal shifts are always deliberate and not just simple genre hopping; while the turns can be jarring you can trust Branan to take you somewhere unexpected.

The 14-song album was self-produced and recorded in the spring of 2016 at Tweed Studios in Oxford, MS with a tight three piece: Branan on lead vocals and guitar (both electric and acoustic); Robbie Crowell (formerly of Deer Tick) on drums and percussion, keys, and horns; and James “Haggs” Haggerty on bass. Additionally, Amanda Shires contributes on fiddle and vocals, and Laura Jane Grace of Against Me! and Dave Hause provide guest vocals.

Cory Branan has four previous full-length releases: The Hell You Say (2002, Madjack Records), 12 Songs (2006, Madjack), Mutt (2012, Bloodshot Records), and The No-Hit Wonder (2014, Bloodshot). His music has received critical praise from the likes of Rolling Stone and Rolling Stone Country, NPR All Things Considered, Noisey, Wall Street Journal, Paste Magazine, Oxford American, Consequence of Sound, Southern Living, and many others.
Rebecca Rego (Solo)
Rebecca Rego (Solo)
"Rego’s songs are genuinely passionate products of the songwriter's heart and mind." - Gapers Block

Lay These Weapons Down, the sophomore record from the Champaign, IL indie outfit, is a swift departure from their 2014 debut folk release Tolono. LTWD is a sonic exercise the group planned and labored on for over a year. Since the release of Tolono, the group has faced divorce, death, and illness, the quartet of musicians (Rebecca Rego, Matt Yeates, Eric Fitts, Cory Ponton) laboring over some eternal questions: the purpose of art, the importance of struggle, the rejection of safe and unexamined lives. The result lends a much darker and existential cast to Rego’s songwriting, and the band’s music as a whole.

Inspired by collaborations between No BS! Brass Band and a number of different artists at Justin Vernon's inaugural Eaux Claires Festival, Rego and The Trainmen enlisted their close friend Reginald Chapman of No BS! to team up for LTWD. The result is a record where Rebecca & The Trainmen's unique brand of indie-folk is enhanced and enlivened with baroque horn parts. Beyond just charting out brass, Chapman (who has previously worked with Foxygen, Mountain Goats and Natalie Prass), was instrumental in helping form and hone Rego and The Trainmen's new vision.

In December 2015 Rego and The Trainmen, Chapman, Engineer James Treichler and producer Beau Sorenson (Bob Mould, Field Report, Elsinore, Thao & The Get Down Stay Down) convened in the rural town of Tolono at Earth Analog Studios. Together they worked to break apart the new songs and build them back from their foundations, moving RR&TT’s sound into a new space. Drawing from the fertile Champaign-Urbana’s music scene, they enlisted the additional help of several local musician friends including Mark Rheaume, Joe Meland (Boycut), Sam Hastings, Ryan Fitzpatrick (the Chicago Symphony Orchestra), and Ryan Groff (Elsinore), throwing their styles and ideas into the hat. What emerged was a completely unique and unexpected new sound, blending elements of rock, folk, and pop with doo-wop, gospel and free jazz.

Lyrically, Rego works through the timeless duality of love and hate, declaring on album standout “Steamroller” that “my own name is like a steamroller / my own heart is like a crushed can / I just want my old man back”. The haunted whispers of “Truth Will Kill You”, the slow-burn lament of “Just The Same Mess”, and the beating heart of the record – the gorgeous piano-driven ballad ‘Rodeo’ - speak to the themes of regret, denial, grief.

Yet as with all dualities where there is darkness there is light, and there are moments of hope on Lay These Weapons Down. From the bold redemptive cry of the title track “sometimes when you surrender / you can run twice as far” to the defiantly hopeful “Drag Me Out Of Here” with its chorus of “I ain’t goin’ nowhere / gonna have to drag me / drag me out of here”, Lay These Weapons Down provides both the solace of understanding and the inspiration of shared humanity. “I want people to find some reassurance and hope in this record” explains Rego. “I turn to music when in my day-to-day I feel lost, scared, anxious, hopeless and defeated. Music is not only a respite from that, but it reminds me that I am not alone and fills me with hope. I hope my music can do for others what so many others music has done for me."

Rebecca Rego & The Trainmen have been honored to share the stage with John Hiatt, Ha Ha Tonka, Rodney Crowell, Mason Jennings, Bowerbirds, Damien Jurado, and so many more.
Rorey Carroll
Rorey Carroll
Musicians often concoct necessary tales to capture the attention of the public. Rorey Carroll doesn’t need that - she’s lived it, and carries the story of her life in every line she writes.

Carroll was born in Chicago to a rather normal American family brought up as a typical, middle class kid. This upbringing along with the fascination of alternative culture led her towards the great American love affair, the counterbalance to the American Dream. At a very young age, she lived in her car in cities all around the county, hopped freight trains, she even hiked the entire Appalachian Trail at age 20. She made money playing music to anyone who would listen, from the subways of New York City to the streets of Ohio. She became a living paradox, somewhere between running from the law and running from the normality of a Midwestern suburban lifestyle. The streets broke her down while another world picked her up. Acoustic music, anti-folk, campfires deep in the heart of the humbolt trim scene, in and out of trouble with the law - she inhaled the great spirit of rock and roll.

She learned how to play from everyone she met. “Love is an outlaw” is a concept of her experience. “Love is as aimless as a renegade, breaks every rule you have.“

bio written by Ben Fields

“There is no filter on experience, so why should there be in songwriting. People listen to music because it makes them feel something, a writer’s goal is to relate their experiences with the audience.”—Rorey

“Roadside Lullabies”, her first album, was recorded with Eric Willson and was released at the end of September, 2010. The album was dedicated to her brother, Michael Carroll.

“Love is an Outlaw” will be released in August.


Roadside Lullabies: album released 2010 produced by Eric Wilson and Rorey Carroll
A Rock By The Sea Christmas: Volume 2 - released November 8th 2011 - song, “Let it Snow”
Venue Information:
The Southgate House Revival-Revival Room
111 East 6th Street
Newport, KY, 41071