Justin Townes Earle – Nothing’s Gonna Change The Way You Feel About Me Now [album review]

by Woody on April 5, 2012

Justin Townes Earle is special artist for us at HearYa. He was one of our earliest visitors for the HearYa sessions, long before the videos starting taking shape. I had the pleasure of spending some time with Justin a few years back on a couple of occasions and always found him captivating. So with the highs and lows in his personal life that he has experienced these last couple of years, it is great to see him coming out the other end with the accolades he deserves. And a truly amazing fourth LP, Nothing’s Gonna Change The Way You Feel About Me Now.

JTE has always had a self-awareness that permeates his music. On Harlem River Blues, Earle referenced his slide back into addiction in Slip Sliding Away. Here, the opening track, “Am I That Lonely Tonight?,” begins:

Here my father on the radio singing “Take Me Home Again”
300 miles from the carolina coast and I’m staring at phones again.
Sometimes I wish I could get away. Sometimes I wish he would call.
Am I That Lonely Tonight? I don’t know.

“Unfortunately, Anna” is the story of a girl in some run-down town where she complains of life’s hardships and wants to know that there’s more to life. The response given to Anna is brilliant, maybe a similar one that Justin received somewhere along the line during his relapse:

I wish there was someting I could do
Baby you’ve gonna to far to come back home
All this time you’ve waiting for the world to change
Unfortunately, Anna its you who needs to change
Unfortunately Anna.

I was lucky to enough to hear these songs for the first time in a live setting at Stubb’s during SXSW. I was so close to that stage that I could have reached out and high-fived Justin. This intimacy was perfect because the album was recorded over four days in a converted church studio without overdubs. The outcome is an album sounding like a live session and less like a finely polished album. There is so little pretense that the music jumps out of the speakers and into your soul.

On the video below; a) I love Dave’s reaction. b) I equally love that he held the album upside down.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Noel Maurice April 6, 2012 at 7:40 am

Justin Townes Earle – Nothing’s Gonna Change The Way You Feel About Me Now is awesome! I love the lyrics and the tune.

CD April 6, 2012 at 1:42 pm

JTE, this is a pretty short sighted album, if you ask me. You could either buy me ice cream and/or call my momma names, greatly changing the way i feel about you now.

Musicians. C’mon, folks, think these things through first.

Dan April 8, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Does anyone else think JTE looks like Anton Chigur in his Late Show performance?

Ashton Lane April 9, 2012 at 12:53 pm

Good mellow performance, heartfelt, great too for the pressure of singing on live national US TV…. eeek!

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