Monday, December 7, 2009

oh, she's a messenger tonight

My email account suddenly leapt a whole number this morning. I was sort of convinced that at the early hour, it had to be trying to get me to buy things I can't afford for the holidays. Instead it was an email from the man who sets my veins on fire with his unfathomable honesty. Obviously I'm talking about Joe Pug, who I wrote about way back when. He has this ability to make me trust music to say what I have a hard time saying. That the industry hasn't permeated and mucked up every beautiful thing happening with strings, voices, and other magical things.

And guess what??

He is finally releasing a debut album! After a stint with some incredible EPs, Joe is giving us a full length album, Messenger, out on February 16. There's also a tour along with that LP, one that includes Colorado so many times I'm seriously considering throwing dignity to the wind and following the shows so I can twist and stomp along to the powerful music he puts out in person.

Instead of giving some tunes from the album for free, like his generous heart has before, Joe made a handy little player that I will embed for you. It will tittilate your senses.

No I tried to trust the stranger
It got hard
Now I see things like a soldier
And I'm jealous of the dark
If my eyes had only gotten colder
I still have an unsophisticated heart

The two new tunes are not what I expected. There's less of the stripped, unpolished, ragged urgency of his past two EPs. After several listens in a row, though, I just can't help but immerse myself in what Joe Pug tells me. His words are absolutely intoxicating, as usual. I was taken aback at first by the more polished production of the two songs given to the public, but it also doesn't take away from the honest eagerness that Joe Pug conveys with every strum.

Yes, I will admit the title track, Messenger, is not my favorite Joe Pug song. It just has a touch too much twang for my personal tastes. But surprisingly I've been listening to it non-stop, and I still get that same warm feeling that I get when I listen to most Joe Pug songs. What a guy; he even makes me love twang in the end. So take a listen; I guarantee you'll want to quit your job and come along with me this spring.

We can even rent a bus if you want.

I can't wait until February.

Joe Pug Tour Dates

1/23 Winnipeg, Manitoba--The Park Theater
2/5 Breckenridge, CO--Colorado Mountain College
2/9 San Diego, CA--The Loft at UCSD*
2/11 Los Angeles, CA--The Echo*
2/12 Santa Cruz, CA--The Crepe Place*
2/13 San Francisco, CA--Great American Music Hall*
2/14 Portland, OR--The Doug Fir*
2/15 Seattle, WA--The Tractor Tavern*
2/16 Vancouver, BC--The Biltmore*
2/18 Salt Lake City, UT--The State Room*
2/19 Denver, CO--The Bluebird*
2/20 Telluride, CO--The Sheridan Opera House*
2/23 Iowa City, IA--The Mill*
2/25 St. Paul, MN--The Turf Club*
2/26 Madison, WI--High Noon Saloon*
2/27 Chicago, IL--Lincoln Hall*
2/28 Detroit, MI--The Magic Stick*
3/1 Toronto, CAN--The Horseshoe*
3/2 Buffalo, NY--The Mohawk*
3/4 Alston, MA--Great Scott*
3/5 New York, NY--Bowery Ballroom*
3/6 Philadelphia, PA--Johnny Brenda's *
3/7 Alexandria, VA--The Birchmere *

* with Justin Townes Earle


  1. hey, thanks for this post! just found your blog through I AM FUEL, YOU ARE FRIENDS' blog post on Joe Plug.
    --> added you to the blogroll as well ;) keep it coming :)

  2. oooops, meant joe PUG...:)

  3. I really like Messenger and am now looking forward to listening to the whole album. I had never heard of Joe Pug before. Thanks for sharing about this artist!