A Hurricane Katrina survivor, Steven Stubblefield rebounds with his most upbeat album in years.
Starlings, TN (L-R): Steven Stubblefield, Mitchell Vandenburg,
Bryan Robison, Tim Bryan. Photo credit: Jason Flowers.
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“Dry County In Hell” is the first single from the “Heartache In 4/4 Time” by new Starlings, TN.
Starlings, TN In The Press
“Where the mountain meets space.” – Jim Beal, San Antonio Express
“Imagine Skip Spence and The Soggy Bottom Boys hitting a bong the size of a Hoover vacuum cleaner and then wrapping their impaired senses around the weirdest, saddest songs Paul Westerberg never showed anyone...” – Jim Ridley, Nashville Scene
“...as adept at songcraft as they are at chilling atmospherics. Stubblefield’s originals prove as varied as they are addictive...” – Jerry Withrow, No Depression
See below for Starlings, TN dates at South By Southwest!
Steven Stubblefield, a Baptist preacher’s son from Shreveport, Louisiana now based in Austin by way of Nashville and Hattiesburg, Mississippi, will release Heartache In 4/4 Time, his sixth album under the Starlings, TN moniker on March 13th via the Chicken Ranch Records label. The album is the most upbeat of the Starlings, TN albums since 2005 when Hurricane Katrina tossed a tree on to Stubblefield’s roof in Mississippi, crushing his house and destroying his instruments, a hard drive containing a nearly-completed album, and thousands of dollars in recording equipment.
Not surprisingly, the years following the storm were dark ones for Stubblefield and unfortunately they came just on the heels of critical praise for the second Starlings, TN album Between Hell and Baton Rouge which included national exposure via an “All Things Considered” feature on NPR. Momentum and morale destroyed, Stubblefield put his dulcimer down until his 2008 release Under The Influence which was followed in 2010 by How Dark It Is Before The Dawn.
Now, after moving to Austin in early 2011 and reconvening with old friends, Stubblefield sounds downright genial on songs from Heartache In 4/4 Time such as the orchestral “Wear Your Smile,” “Too Little Too Late” (recalling the gospel choirs Stubblefield absorbed as a child), the front-porch pick-and-grinner “Tonight I’m Just Looking to Get Laid” and the album’s first single “Dry County In Hell” (STREAM).
Heartache In 4/4 Time is the completion of a rebirth and a reconnection with Stubblefield’s past that reunites him with Starlings, TN co-founder Tim Bryan and also with Bryan Robison, whom Stubblefield played with more than twenty years ago in The Roadside Monuments. The new album is very much a piece of the reassembled band’s sound. Gone are the eerie Appalachian atmospherics of earlier Starlings, TN records and actually, with the addition of Robison, Heartache In 4/4 Time becomes the first Starlings, TN record to feature the electric guitar.
In fact, for the first time since his days as a member of The Roadside Monuments and his punk band The Methadone Actors (Chicken Ranch Records recently released a two-volume collection of The Methadone Actors’ singles, live and compilation tracks coupled with its “lost” second album), Stubblefield composed the bulk of the songs on a guitar, albeit an acoustic. “I’m standing in the sunshine and there’s no cloud over me,” says Stubblefield. “When you listen to Heartache In 4/4 Time, it’s likely you will feel the same way.”
Heartache In 4/4 Time by Starlings, TN will be released on March 13th via the Chicken Ranch Records label to be followed by several performances in Austin including this year’s South By Southwest festival. Steven Stubblefield is available for interviews. Contact Josh Bloom at Fanatic for more information.
Startlings, TN Live
03/02 Austin, TX @ Roadhouse Rags (1600 Fort View) 9PM, $10
03/14 Austin, TX @ Elysium (705 Red River) Chicken Ranch Records Day Party, 3PM
03/15 Austin, TX @ Cheapo Discs (914 North Lamar) In-Store, 3PM
03/22 Austin, TX @ Carousel Lounge (1110 East 52nd) 7PM
03/30 Austin, TX @ Driskill Hotel Bar (604 Brazos) 6PM
Heartache In 4/4 Time
(Chicken Ranch, March 13th, 2012)
01. Too Little Too Late
02. One More Time
03. Wear Your Smile
04. Aragon Mill
05. Firearms and Seeds
06. A Girl from Tchoupitoulas St.
07. Dry County in Hell (STREAM)
08. Daylight Saving
09. Leaving Mississippi
10. (Tonight) I’m Just Lookin’ to Get Laid
11. Suffer No More
12. You Will Heal
Starlings, TN Links
Contact Josh Bloom at Fanatic Promotion