JAM THE TRACKS WHILE YOU READ
"GREAT ADD YOU SAUCY MINX" - BEN
October 15th, 2023
Pioneertown is an album of opposites attracting. A work of Americana fueled songwriting par excellence. There is a rattlesnake purr, a coyote call, a dusty desert wind amidst the rev of engine. Cacti flower beneath sun scorch and starlight. There is sex and connection, dancing in the kitchen. There is love and absolution. Desire, release, hope, dreams. Southern Call have cast a red dirt devil to sow fever seeds into your soul.
Cierra Louise and Sean Trainor, the husband/wife duo behind Southern Call, come from opposite coasts: California and North Carolina. And like all great projects, be it marriage or albums, often meeting in the middle, blending talents and abilities, makes for something special. That middle ground found a home in East Nashville, TN, where the opening track is a subtle yet perfectly produced prologue, a greeting, a welcome, a come on in and listen to these harmonies we’ve whipped up. The vinyl is there, by the eames chair, it’s ok, you’ve got 40 minutes to spare. Comparisons to other artists is a typical critic’s trick. But sneaking in the shade of Stevie Nicks or Fleetwood Macian muse does a disservice to this duo. They've distilled their influences into something unique and poignant.
When “Black Motorcycle” bounces from your speakers you will not hear (or visualize) a more aesthetically stylish track this side of some Springsteen/David Lynch confab. It is all “brass rings…red sunset…leather and smoke…snakeskin boots…[and] cheap aviators from ‘65.” It is James Dean cool. It is sleek and sinewy. It is sex as song. “Break My Fever” and “Firewood” and “Cactus Flower” are further examples that showcase their songwriting talent and Sean’s production chops. Both Sean and Cierra trade lead vocal duties throughout the album, often blending harmonies and background vocals as a bonus. There is a narrative arc to these songs. A story to piece together. Two gypsy souls, scattered and lost, loners and drifters, coming together, joining and building something beyond themselves. Growing a garden out of wild flowers. Pioneertown is an oasis in the desert. It is sustenance after a diet of disposable pop music. It demands your attention.
- TRENT RYAN SMITH