Record Label: Small Batch Records
Buy on Amazon.com
The prince of Memphis has released yet another album (see what I did there?) of folk-inspired Southern rock accompanied by incisively poetic lyrics. He’s brought in some reinforcements this time around, calling on pianist Chris Weary, percussionist Leh Sammons, bassist Adam Poor and guitarist Ben Crum to add Memphis muscle to the proceedings.
“Inside This Brain” turns the proverbial searchlight inward, as Hulett plumbs not only his own depths but seeks answers to those great questions that bedevil all of us. “Giddy Up” could be the kickoff song for your next country-inspired road trip mix. “Summer” is an instrumental paean to those rapidly departing warm temperatures, and then there’s “Another Bad Scene,” in which Hulett implores us all to make the right choices. I quite enjoyed “The Bells,” which discusses the complicated relationship those of us raised Catholic may have with the church as adults. It’s one of the album’s best—the motif continues on the following track, “Pain and Suffering.” “Local News” made me smile in its reminder that we have become far too national in our media ecosystems. “Local news makes me sad” is the most downbeat lyric set to an uptempo beat you’re likely to hear this year!
“Town Called Belle” is among the album’s highlights, a travelogue that could be on that same aforementioned travel playlist, and album-finisher “Let Go of the Letdown” is a stark reminder that sometimes, well, you just have to move on.
Hulett is among the most prolific artists on the radar, and his lyrical writing continues to amaze album after album. He even does his own mixing on “Note to Self,” with album mastering by Jacob Church. Keep ’em coming, Jeff!
Notable Tracks: Town Called Belle, Local News, The Bells, Inside This Brain