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The Lost Cause Minstrels

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Album Review

Songwriter Grayson Capps is known to roots rock fans for his often incendiary, guitar-driven visions of ragged, Southern Gothic madness and desire. At their best, his songs reveal burning, age-old truths that lie buried under time-worn myths and misconceptions. Capps' The Lost Cause Minstrels is his fifth studio album and is the name of his new band of Gulf Coast musicians. He began recording the set while living in Nashville — he relocated there after a long stint in New Orleans that was brought to an end after Hurricane Katrina. Midway through, however, he decided to come home to his native Alabama. The music here reflects history, mystery, change, and a musical diversity whose roots lie in his home state, although given real breadth and depth in NOLA. Trina Shoemaker, his producer and partner, co-helmed the album, while Capps and band assemble the tightest, most focused set of songs in his career. There's the unlikely pairing of a bluegrass chorus, shuffling rock & roll, and country blues in the opener, "Highway 42." Capps is in fine voice, giving his protagonist room to reason, love, and come up fighting for the things he believes in. The mystical Mississippi informs the popping tom-tom barroom jumper "Coconut Moonshine." "John the Dagger" and "No Definitions" are pure, raw, dirty-assed blues-rock, with a razored yet elegant poetry for lyrics. "Yes You Are" is a love song that confesses with balance — not bravado — his protagonist's devotion as well as his faults. The stellar reading of Taj Mahal's "Annie's Lover" weaves together traditional country, Delta blues, and regional folk musics into a seamless — and swinging — aural tapestry. Richard "Rabbit" Brown's "Jane's Alley Blues" is the other cover here, redone as a shimmering blues with a killer rumba rhythm. "Ol' Slac" is a stomping old-school jazz and second-line R&B tune about the revival of the Mobile Mardi Gras after the Civil War. "Chief Seattle" reflects on the state of the world with a Buddhist's sense of equanimity, while "Rock 'n' Roll" is a moody electric folk song about the tragedies and ironies in living — and surviving — day to day, and learning from one's mistakes. The Lost Cause Minstrels takes all of Capps' strengths, hones them to a razored point, and trains them on the listener in a wily collection of songs that reflect the pathos, passion, and earned wisdom of an itinerant music man.

Customer Reviews

Grayson Capps keeps on Doing It!!

Another amazing album by Grayson Capps. The new band sounds amazing and they're putting out the hits!!!

Farmers Inn, Kirkland, Il

Another great album. Thanks Grayson.

great song writing and composition... part 5

Raw and unpretentious musings are trademark characteristics of Grayson Capps’ writing style. This new effort, and supported by The Lost Cause Minstrels, is another outstanding set of tracks.

In our world of polished and refined music, Grayson & the LCM, deliver a unique sound with energy and a passion not often found in todays market. And those attributes are present in every track, start to finish. If you enjoy good, foot-stomping southern blues, and music that tends to reflect everyday life and history… then you’ll certainly enjoy this latest album.

Biography

Born: April 17, 1967 in Opelika, AL

Genre: Blues

Years Active: '90s, '00s

A literate and impassioned songwriter whose song characters are often caught barely hanging on at the edges of American life, Grayson Capps is a bit like a New Orleans version of Tom Waits, albeit more of a roots rocker in actual musical execution. Capps was born April 17, 1967, in Opelika, Alabama, the son of a Baptist preacher and an Auburn University student. After his birth, both of his parents ended up being teachers in Brewton, Alabama. They moved to Fairhope, Alabama when Capps was in the...
Full Bio
The Lost Cause Minstrels, Grayson Capps
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