The Old 97's will release their new album and ATO debut, 'Most Messed Up' on 7th July. A revealing, 12-track meditation on 20 years in music, the record shows them at their raucous, boozy best. It's "a rock opera, a way-off Broadway musical about a musician's life, loves and lubrication," says music critic Bill Flanagan.
The band are sharing new track 'Longer Than You've Been Alive', the album's epic, 6-minute opening track that pulls back the curtain on both the excesses and tedium of the world of a touring musician.
Recorded in Austin and produced by Salim Nourallah, 'Most Messed Up' also features guest appearances by Tommy Stinson (The Replacements, Guns N' Roses) and Jon Rauhouse (Neko Case) on lap-steel.
Titles like 'Wasted,' 'Intervention,' 'Wheels Off,' 'Let's Get Drunk & Get It On,' and 'Most Messed Up' hint at the kind of narrators frontman Rhett Miller likes to inhabit - men who possess an appetite for indulgence and won't let a few bad decisions get in the way of a good story. The magic in Miller's songwriting lies in the depth that he lends his characters. Upon closer inspection, the hard partying and endless pursuit of a good time often reveals itself to be a Band-Aid covering up deeper wounds and emotional scars. "There's a lot of darkness hidden in this record," Miller explains.
The Old 97's emerged from Dallas twenty years ago at the forefront of a musical movement blending rootsy, country-influenced songwriting with punk rock energy. 'Most Messed Up' follows their recent two-volume set, 'The Grand Theatre,' which found the band as "lifers writing for keeps," according to Rolling Stone, and their 2013 EP featuring Waylon Jennings, 'Old 97's & Waylon Jennings.'
1. 'Longer Than You've Been Alive'
2. 'Give It Time'
3. 'Let's Get Drunk & Get It On'
4. 'This Is The Ballad'
5. 'Wheels Off'
9. 'The Disconnect'
10. 'The Ex Of All You See'
12. 'Most Messed Up'
Listen to 'Longer Than You've Been Alive' here: