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The Great Book Of John

The Great Book Of John

Birmingham, AL's The Great Book Of John prep self-titled LP, to be released August 16th via Communicating Vessels

The Great Book of John is led by Taylor Shaw -- founding guitarist of Birmingham Alabama's late, great Wild Sweet Orange. Shaw's music is eminently lyrical – recalling Jeff Buckley’s psychedelic soul, Leonard Cohen’s poetic (and lacerating) wordplay, and fiery fretwork influenced by Stevie Ray Vaughn and David Gilmour as much as it is by Radiohead. Yes, those are big names to drop, but this is big music – emotional, cinematic, but never pandering. Dreams writ large but still cryptic and surreal. And though these songs almost ceaselessly flow from Shaw, The Great Book of John is very much a band – and a formidable one at that. Along with fellow WSO alumni vocalist Bekah Fox, bassist Alex Mitchell, and drummer Chip Kilpatrick, The Great Book of John can conjure the sublime in any setting – with or without electricity.

Whereas the band’s debut album, Yves’ Blues, was a largely acoustic affair recorded in one long session, The Great Book of John is a deeply-layered production brimming with amplified crunch and a thick, somnambulant atmosphere, provided in part by musician / producer Jeffery Cain (Remy Zero, Sanders Bohlke, Dead Snares) and Grammy Award winning engineer Darrell Thorp (Radiohead, Beck, Outkast). These big sheets of sound are in full-effect on the three songs that commence the album -- “Robin Hood,” “Brown Frown” and “Let Me Slide” (the last of which, along with “On and On” is also available as a limited-edition 7-inch single) – and the songs that open and close Side Two (“Black Heart” and “Simple Things”).

But The Great Book of John is not completely laden in thick guitars. In fact, the album’s stripped-down middle section most closely reveals the fragile heart that beats beneath many of Shaw’s best songs. “Ashes Over Manhattan” is perhaps the album’s most buoyant song while “Wise Blood” might the most beautiful – and, with it’s stripped down arrangement and a production reminiscent of Nico’s “Chelsea Girls,” “Wise Blood” is a prime showcase for Shaw’s lyrical acuity.

The band will tour the continental US starting in August. Tour dates TBA.

Check out the video for the band's re-interpretation of INXS' "Never Tear Us Apart" is below (via Magnet).

The Great Book of John is the debut long-player from Birmingham-based label Communicating Vessels. It will be available digitally and physically (CD and limited-edition 180-gram clear vinyl) on August 16th via Burnside Distribution.

Artist - The Great Book Of John
Album- The Great Book Of John
US Release Date - August 16, 2011
Label - Communicating Vessels

01. Robin Hood
02. Brown Frown
03. Let Me Slide
04. Wise Blood
05. Ashes Over Manhattan
06. Black Heart
07. Cover My Eyes
08. 10,000 Miles
09. On And On
10. Foreign Currency
11. Simple Things

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