Cory Branan

Cory Branan

biography

ADIOS is Cory Branan’s death record. Not the cheeriest of openings, but like all of Branan’s mercurial work, it’s probably not what you think. As funny and defiant as it is touching and sad, this self-dubbed “loser’s survival kit” doesn’t spare its subjects or the listener.

Not even Branan’s deceased father is let off the hook. In the tender homage “The Vow” he drolly cites his father’s favorite banality “that’s what you get for thinking” as “probably not the best lesson for kids.” For most songwriters that would be the punchline but Branan pushes through words and, in his father’s actions, finds a kind of “genius in the effortless way he just ‘did’.”

Not all the death on ADIOS is literal mortality. “Imogene” is sung from the wreckage of a love that once “poked fun at the pain, stoked the sun in the rain” but ends with the urgent call to “act on the embers, ash won’t remember the way back to fire.” 

The trademark lyrical agility is mirrored sonically. Never a genre loyalist, ADIOS finds Branan (much like his musically restless heroes Elvis Costello and Tom Waits) coloring outside the lines in sometimes startling shades of fuzz and twang. While unafraid to play it arrow-straight when called for (“The Vow,” “Equinox,” “Don’t Go”), ADIOS veers wildly from the Buddy Holly-esque rave up “I Only Know” (sung with punk notables Laura Jane Grace and Dave Hause), through the swampy “Walls, MS” to the Costello-like new wave of “Visiting Hours.”

The blistering punk of “Another Nightmare in America” bops along daring listeners to “Look away, look away, move along, nothing to see here” (the song is written from the point of view of a racist killer cop). And as the mourning singer on “Cold Blue Moonlight” shifts from paralysis to panic, the song’s jazzy drone shifts to an almost Sabbath fury. The tonal shifts are always deliberate and not just simple genre hopping; while the turns can be jarring you can trust Branan to take you somewhere unexpected.

The 14-song album was self-produced and recorded in the spring of 2016 at Tweed Studios in Oxford, MS with a tight three piece: Branan on lead vocals and guitar (both electric and acoustic); Robbie Crowell (formerly of Deer Tick) on drums and percussion, keys, and horns; and James “Haggs” Haggerty on bass. Additionally, Amanda Shires contributes on fiddle and vocals, and Laura Jane Grace of Against Me! and Dave Hause provide guest vocals.

Cory Branan has four previous full-length releases: The Hell You Say (2002, Madjack Records), 12 Songs (2006, Madjack), Mutt (2012, Bloodshot Records), and The No-Hit Wonder (2014, Bloodshot). His music has received critical praise from the likes of Rolling Stone and Rolling Stone Country, NPR All Things Considered, Noisey, Wall Street Journal, Paste Magazine, Oxford American, Consequence of Sound, Southern Living, and many others.  

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news

Six New Frontier Artists Make Alternate Root Top 100 Albums of 2017
Cory Branan Featured on Noisetrade’s Staff Picks
Rodney Crowell, Cory Branan, and Dave Hause Featured in Rolling Stone’s 10 Best Country Collaborations
New Frontier Artists Take Over Rolling Stone’s “40 Best Country and Americana Albums of 2017”
15 New Frontier Artists To Play AmericanaFest 2017
Stream Cory Branan’s New Album, Adios, on Noisey!
Alternative Press Premieres Cory Branan’s “Another Nightmare in America”
Rolling Stone Premieres Cory Branan’s New Song, “Imogene”
New Frontier Touring Artists to Play Rhythm N’ Blooms Music Festival
Catch Cory Branan on Last Call with Carson Daly Tonight

TOUR DATES

Date City Venue
Jul 06 Tyler, TX True Vine Brewing Company
Jul 07 San Antonio, TX Sam’s Burger Joint
Aug 07 Carrboro, NC Cat’s Cradle (Backroom)
Aug 08 Knoxville, TN The Bijou Theatre
Aug 10 Atlanta, GA Variety Playhouse
Aug 11 Birmingham, AL Workplay Theatre
Aug 28 Yorkville, IL Law Office Pub & Music Hall
Aug 29 Lansing, MI Mac’s Bar
Aug 30 Fort Wayne, IN The B-Side at One Lucky Guitar
Sep 11 Rochester, NY Abilene Bar & Lounge
Sep 16 New Haven, CT Cafe Nine
Sep 20 Baltimore, MD Club 603
Sep 22 Harrisonburg, VA The Golden Pony
Sep 25 Athens, GA The Foundry
Sep 26 West Columbia, SC New Brookland Tavern
Sep 27 Greenville, SC Radio Room
Sep 28 Decatur, GA Eddie’s Attic
Oct 06 Memphis, TN MEMPHO

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