Joe Pug has done a clever thing in using Shawn Stuckey's artwork on his CD covers and his website. Not only is it beautiful, but when we received his new album this week and I saw that familiar style on the cover drawing, I knew Joe was back in town.
"The Great Despiser", which will be released April 24th, is the follow-up to 2010's "Messenger". Here's Joe baring his soul once again with his resonant, somewhat mournful vocal delivery and beautifully straightforward guitar finger-picking and strumming. He communicates the importance of the songs he's written through his unwavering commitment to every note. About half of the songs have full band arrangements and it's great to hear Joe rock out. He keeps a balance, though, and doesn't forsake the winning simplicity of just his voice and guitar.
I listened back to an interview I did with Joe backstage at Newport Folk 2009 and his performance from that same year. Something to keep you going until the album is released in April...
Click here for the interview
Click here for the Newport Folk performance