We’ve announced our Holler Songs Of The Year a day too soon! Just our luck to have a whole bunch of brilliant new country songs all come out the day after. So, here are the ones that came out a day too late to be included, but could have easily made it in.
As tempting as it was to begin the playlist with Billy Strings’ new 38 minute live medley, this week’s Best New Country cover stars are Sarah Shook & the Disarmers with the first taste of their forthcoming album, Revelations, which was announced today. Due out in March 2024, the 10-song collection is the first to be self-produced by bandleader River Shook and captures that unique mix of country twang and raw punk rock energy that the band’s live shows have become known for.
‘Backsliders’ is a song that takes Shook back to their days tending bar in a Chapel Hill dive called The Cave. Combining self-deprecating and longing lyrics with a deceptively buoyant arrangement, the song illustrates not only the special and sometimes tumultuous romantic entanglements experienced by service workers, but also how easy it is to fall into bad habits when dealing with any type of loss.
"I wrote Backsliders for small town bartenders and people who just can't seem to quit each other," Shook said in a teasing post on Instagram before the songs' release.
"A lot of artists are in this industry for fame, recognition, and money but those things don't mean anything to me,” they say about the new album. “Songwriting is it for me. It's the only real healthy coping mechanism I've ever had. It's lifesaving, and all of my writing is autobiographical. I write everything based on my observations and experiences, but there was something about Revelations that felt more personal to me. I unlocked this level of honesty with myself and an ability to be more objective about the things I struggle with daily.”
“I'm a firm believer that if you are an artist, and you want to make better art, a big part of that isn't just exercising your musical skills, it's growing as a human being. So, every time I make a record, I want to be able to listen to it and look back on who I was then. I want to see this arc and this evolution. That's really fucking important to me."
Elsewhere we’ve got new songs from some of the artists we’ve got big hopes for in 2024. Lizzie No gives us another taste of their forthcoming album Halfsies with the beautiful ‘Annie Oakley’ and Redferrin follows up his mega hit ‘Jack and Diet Coke’ and takes us back to warmer days with ‘Miss Summer.’
While Adam Doleac and his wife MacKinnon await the birth of their first child, the 'Biggest Fan' singer releases a full version of his cover of Switchfoot's 'Dare You To Move.'
Meg McRee finally stops teasing us too and releases her History Of Heartbreak EP in full, and we’ve got a suitably wintery version of ‘The Moon’ featuring Hillary Lindsey and Lori McKenna for you.
With Holler's Best New Country playlist, you can listen to them all and more. The playlist contains all of the best new country, Americana and roots tunes we're spinnin' right here at Holler HQ.
Check out this week's new country song releases below and listen to the full playlist below:
Sarah Shook & The Disarmers
The Dead South
Diplo and Maren Morris
The Kentucky Gentlemen
Struggle Jennings and Brianna Harness
Sean Stemaly and Taylor Austin Dye
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For more of the finest country playlists from Holler, see below: