Chris & Adam Carroll is prepping to release a new disc. It’s titled Good Farmer and drops on August 9. But first, for those not yet familiar with the act in question, a bit o’ background.
Chris & Adam Carroll
Faithful readers of this relocated column may recognize Adam Carroll. Adam is the previously reviewed artisanal singer-songwriter and musician out of Tyler, Texas. His solo resume includes nine previous discs.
His premiere platter, released in 2000, is titled South of Town. He is known for presenting audiences with a sense of pretentious-free modesty that actually adds a quiet impact to his work. Chris and Adam got hitched in 2013.
Since then the dueting duo has accumulated a number of songs and stories they have imagined and even actually met while on the road touring together. Initially touring as co-headliners, a chemistry quickly developed between them and they now perform together. Their signature sound is a mix of music genres, including Americana, country, and folk.
According to a recent press release, Good Farmer was recorded “mostly in one day last winter.” The intention of the album was to capture “the spirit of the live show.” (Fortunately, while it includes songs from live shows it was recorded at The Zone and thus avoids the issues of chatty audience members and people clapping or cheering at the wrong time.)
The Carrolls added: “We had so much fun making this project and it’s been a long time coming. We’ve built up a dedicated fan base after the last few years of touring and we wanted this album to be a reflection of our live show.”
On this album, Chris (mandolin and guitar) and Adam (rhythm and lead guitar) share lead and harmony vocals. They are backed by producer Lloyd Maines (ukulele, baritone mandolin, baritone guitar, 12-string, high string, and acoustic guitars, pedal steel, bass, and percussion) and Dennis Ludiker (fiddle).
Track by track
This 10-track album of all original material that unless otherwise noted was written by the crooning couple. It opens on “Hi-Fi Love.” This was co-written some time ago by Adam and Scott Nolan. It’s a clever, expanded version that is highlighted with playful back-and-forth dueting and plenty of pop culture references to boot.
“City By The Sea” is a pretty piece that works well. Unfortunately, it is all too soon overshadowed by the next number.
The next number is the titular “Good Farmer.” It’s the first single off the album and focuses on nurturing ladies from Chris’ life. It was inspired by Errol Loudsberry (previously mentioned in Adam’s “Errol’s Song.”
“Tough As Nails” follows here. Their signature sound remains solid yet fluid thanks to their willingness to share the spotlight. This cut is a tuneful tip of the hat to Chris.
“Angel In God’s Country” was co-composed by Chris and Michael O’Connor. It is a song about perseverance.
The nigh bittersweet “Louise” is highlighted by the performing pair’s harmonies and has an interesting origin. Their press release notes: “After meeting a fan who collected songs about women named Louise and claimed there are more than 250 of them, the Carrolls decided to add one more.”
“The Old Wilted Rose” again demonstrates the simple yet effective balance between the two artists and the musical presentation remains consistent. Also included here is “Love You Already.” It’s a song about “immediate love.”
“Ocean Of Peace” is a solo song by Adam. It’s a stand-alone track yet it works well here.
The closing cut is “Take Me Away.” The song was co-written by Adam and John Evans. Almost two decades old, it was cut from the playlist of Hayes Carll’s popular 2005 disc Little Rock. Adam dusts it off and Chris adds a new voice to it too.
Overall, this is an audio offering that officially debuts the cooperative talents of the talented twosome. They have a natural chemistry that is obvious. While the work also has a familiarity due in part to Adam’s previous platters, there is no doubt that Chris and Adam have a positive impact on each other.
Furthermore, the result is a welcome one to be sure. So check out Chris & Adam Carroll’s Good Farmer and you might find yourself engulfed in an “Ocean Of Peace.”