Well looks like we made it to February, but that doesn’t mean I’m done mopping up the remains of just 2022 yet. This one got away in the last few weeks of the year, a spare folk gem from Australia that feels more like it might have come out of the woods of North Carolina or the overcast enclaves of the Pacific Northwest. JB Paterson’s second offering makes its way out on Holiday Maker Records, home to fellow country-folk fish out of water Family Jordan. The record was self-recorded in Paterson’s solar-powered studio and it brings that kind of homespun aesthetic to its core sound. A simple, sparse record that finds Paterson opening up his songwriting style from his previous two albums.
While his reedy rasp and knack for folk-rock hooks remain in tact, Paterson shifts towards an unburdening of his sound that gives the record space and digs out his charms in ways that were sometimes buried before. Aside from his wood-paneled folk approach, the record swings through bluegrass bouts and country sojourns with help from members of Family Jordan and Full Flower Moon Band on violin and banjo. As with a lot of Aussie exports, this one seems like it should hit home with US listeners but remains just out of reach — landing square in territory occupied by Vetiver, Fleet Foxes, The Cave Singers and their more recent acolytes. The record is draped in autumn, but should make a winsome woodsmoke companion for the winter months ahead as well. If this one slipped away from you as well during the end of 2022, I recommend taking a swing back to grab it.
Support the artist. Buy it HERE.