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Country - Released October 8, 2013 | Warner Records

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Country - Released November 27, 2020 | Warner Records

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Country - Released April 20, 2018 | Warner Records

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Following her debut where she appeared as the new short-lived bimbo of country pop, Ashley Monroe quickly proved she had a strong personality, at times moving away from the path clearly marked out by Nashville. Indeed, the singer from Knoxville, Tennessee, ended up collaborating with Jack White and his Raconteurs, and even founded the Pistol Annies with Angaleena Presley and Miranda Lambert. With The Blade, her third album released in 2015, she confirmed her mastery over a large artistic vocabulary, both with her voice and the instruments chosen. Without revolutionising the genre, Monroe put out an album nicely packed up with contemporary country, filled with effective melodies, and most importantly featuring a voice of stunning purity, inspired by two great untouchables, Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris… Three years later, Sparrow is the work of a more and more adventurous artist, who never compromises to aim for the top of the charts. Produced by brilliant Dave Cobb who worked with Sturgill Simpson, Chris Stapleton, Shooter Jennings, Colter Wall, Zac Brown Band and Jason Isbell, this fourth opus takes country music down paths previously walked by the likes of Bobbie Gentry, Glen Campbell, Waylon Jennings, Rick Hall, Shelby Lynne and even early Elton John. In that regard, Sparrow isn’t a current pop country album, but rather an old-style record. Timeless to be exact. Cobb’s work is in fact remarkable in its tendency to blur, even erase any sign of the current era… “To me this record is about acknowledging past hurt, forgiveness and freedom to move forward. The most terrible things that happen to you are the most beautiful songs. That's what I respect the most about music." Here, Ashley Monroe plays the therapy card. And while she does settle some scores with her mother and even herself, and dive back into her younger years, her album is both introspective and able to touch anyone. Because, much like Alison Krauss, Lee Ann Womack, or even closer, Kacey Musgraves, she is well aware of the emotional potential of this kind of pathos, while always remaining dignified, serene and very classy. This is the main strength of an album that at times doesn’t hold back on violins, but handles them like one would carry nitroglycerin. Highly recommended! © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Country - Released November 18, 2016 | Warner Records

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Country - Released June 16, 2017 | Warner Records

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Country - Released September 23, 2020 | Warner Records

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Country - Released October 2, 2020 | Warner Records

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Country - Released October 26, 2004 | Warner Records

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Country - Released February 19, 2021 | Warner Records

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Country - Released April 10, 2015 | Warner Records

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Country - Released June 16, 2017 | Warner Records

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Even if he is not from the same generation as Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Billy Joe Shaver or Kris Kristofferson, Steve Earle is a genuine outlaw, lock, stock and barrel. His attitude chimes with the criticisms that people have levelled against him since he started out: too rock for Nashville, too country for rock. With time, Earle made a name for himself as a great songwriter, full stop - he didn't worry too much about which musical family would adopt him. A disciple and friend of his fellow Texans Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark, he was a member of the outlaw band that lived on the margins of Nashville in the Seventies. He is also a perfect Don Juan (seven marriages!), a recovered junky who endured a long descent into hell that took him as far as prison, an actor who has worked on cult series like The Wire or Treme and even a novelist (with a new collection entitled Doghouse Roses and the novel I'll Never Get Out Of This World Alive). As much at home in punchy country rock and visceral folk as in bluegrass, genres which he attacks with the heart of a punk and the soul of a committed rebel engaged in all the struggles of America's radical left, the self-proclaimed hardcore troubadour here renders homage to his rebel predecessor, possibly the ultimate outlaw: Waylon Jennings. And the guitars are furious from the off, which is a side of Steve Earle we have not seen for years. From the first strands of So You Wannabe An Outlaw, the first song on the album and the one that gives it its title, the bearded man's country rock intentions are pretty clear. And even more so when we hear, in the midst of this rollocking track, the voice of Willie Nelson! Elsewhere, Earle sings a duet with Miranda Lambert on This is How It Ends, and then does the same with Johnny Bush (author of Whiskey River by Willie Nelson!) on Walkin' in LA. The record leaves us giddy and sweating, covered in dust, knuckles bloodied. Note that the Deluxe Edition contains some choice covers: Ain't No God in Mexico by Billy Joe Shaver, Sister's Coming Home/Down At The Corner Beer Joint by Willie Nelson, The Local Memory also by Willie Nelson and the immense Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way by Waylon Jennings, an outlaw hymn par excellence. © MZ/Qobuz

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Warner Records in the magazine