Saturday, April 29, 2017

New Music 2017 - Part 19 - Wrangled - Angaleena Presley

When 'The Pistol Annies' hit the world with a delightfully sardonic take on country, back in 2011, it would be fair to say that Angaleena Presley was the least well-known of the three and, perhaps actually rather importantly, the oldest. Miranda Lambert and Ashley Monroe were already better known.
She was also the last of the three to release a solo LP and that when it came was the brilliant, off-kilter 'American Middle Class' in 2014. It immediately caught my attention, in the time before Margo Price was known-about, for it's uncompromising take on the grubby underside 
of the American Dream.
The two have rather different takes on what at the end of the day is discrimination, inequality and sheer frustration. The thread is that they are both brilliant about putting them to words and then weaving those words into songs. Songs that people far away can still relate to. 

I'm not afraid to write this and not least because Britain has plenty of the same problems and I'm not one to try and deny that. It is a big issue and also a massively divisive one: Poverty, history suggests, does not tend to bring people together.

What I will say is that, of the most recent solo albums from each of the Annies, this is (and the others both guest on it, so its very clear they are still in touch) the the point when 'Holler Annie' finally becomes Angaleena the outlaw Annie.

Angaleena Presley - Wrangled (Mining Light Music/Thirty Tigers, 21 April 2017).

Pretty much nothing that she turns her lyric to, and therefore her voice also, comes out smelling of roses. That is telling it nicely; she often doesn't.
I don't even need to include the track-list because, in true old-school fashion, it is on the cover of the record. This release has multiple issues and one of them is that it may turn out to be amongst the best albums of 2017.
Yes, of course I would like to see Angaleena play live again.
 Not least because I know that she is astonishing. She is far better than my photography.


Stage 1, Cambridge Folk Festival, 31 July 2015.

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