JOHN BUTLER TRIO HOME


Home is the JBT first album in four years and possibly their most personal. The album takes us on a personal journey through anxiety, family, love and finding our place in an ever-changing world. Once again the band manage to successfully dovetail electronica and hip-hop with folk and country and even the odd nod to world music too. Granted, it's a gumbo that should be an epic clash of styles: can you imagine DJ Khaled teaming up with The Shires? No, neither can we.

Thankfully the Antipodean group have syphoned just enough tropes from those genres to make the band's sound distinctive and their music endlessly layered. Tahitian Blue settles us in for the voyage with a criminally catchy banjo riff and the first of several nautical references. Running Away carefully combines the rootsy feel of the banjo and the pulsating thud of drums to deliver the first of several commercial songs for the band. Up until the title track, things have been fairly serene but the itinerant title track sounds as if it has come from a totally different album. Typically you'd expect a song with of this name to appear as a closer, bringing everything to a neat conclusion. Here the heavier drum beats and electro distortion are deliberately placed to steer the sonic course in a different direction. Coffee, Methadone & Cigarettes owes more to a traditional country style track, only the thrum of the Cajon links it percussively to the earlier tracks. You Don't Have To Be Angry Anymore and We Want More shifts the tone towards the mainstream once again, without compromising their integrity. If you like your music less pedestrian than Mumford and edgier than The Lumineers it's about time you discovered the multi-platinum selling John Butler Trio.

Groupie rating 4/5

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