Wake Up, the lead track.
Shooter Jennings, son of Waylon, is releasing Black Ribbons on March 2. It’s an ambitious concept album dealing with the economic collapse and possible coming dark times. In it, a late night talk show host, Will O’ The Wisp (played by author Stephen King), stays on the air for the final hour before the government seizes the airwaves and turns them into non-stop propaganda. Heavily-armed government thugs wait outside the studio as Will O’ The Wisp rails against the coming darkness and plays the music of Hierophant, Shooter’s new band.
A mind-blowing 70-minute opus that completely obliterates genre distinctions. On this unprecedented work, twanging dobros coexist with Nintendo chipsets; brutally assaultive passages alternate with moments of unabashed tenderness, and surreal Floydian soundscapes float above smoking slabs of whiskey-soaked southern soul. It’s an electrifying thrill ride across a dense, dark and gloriously decadent musical landscape.
This is not country music, or even outlaw country. Rather it’s a dark, compelling, nightmare ride into what could be, sounding more like Radiohead at times than country. Jennings is taking huge chances here, and in my view it pays off. It’s jagged, angular, and scary. Is this a paranoiac vision or could it happen? I dunno. But it bears repeated listening. There’s real depth and thought here. The primary message seems to be, don’t let the bastards kill your hope and dreams.
(Due to a recent idiotic and repressive FCC regulation, I am compelled to inform you I received an advance copy of the CD for free. Interestingly, this rule applies only to bloggers and not mainstream media. Truly, the government must just be protecting me from corrupting my own morals should I not disclose such a huge gift. Too bad they aren’t also trying to protect banksters from being corrupt rather than just shoveling more money at them. Hey, that’s kind of what Shooter is talking about, isn’t it…)