Avery County, I’m Bound to You, is the fourth album from singer/songwriter Barton Carroll, who built up a steady North Carolina fanbase when he used to play with Crooked Fingers. I can’t say I’ve heard his stuff before, but I love this record. It’s full of variety, extremely interesting music, and wonderful lyrics.
The bilingual country/folk single “It Had to be a Train” is as catchy as hell, but without relying overmuch on the chorus. Actually, it’s the accordion line that kept running through my head (ahem) like a train. All his songs are like that–like complex pop songs. Where most pop singers sell you on the hook, Carroll uses the hook as an anchor, or a jump-off point, while he drifts purposefully through themes and riffs off of that common ground.
I can’t praise this enough. Check it out.