Wednesday 27 May 2020

Willard Grant Conspiracy - Trail's End

Willard Grant Conspiracy was an alt-country band based near Palmdale, California, USA.

Originally formed by Robert Fisher and Paul Austin in 1995 in Boston, Massachusetts, the band operated as a collective, with vocalist Fisher the only permanent member throughout its existence. Up to 30 other musicians occasionally contributed to the band, both in the studio and during live performances. Fisher's voice and Americana style have been compared to both John Cale and Johnny Cash, with most songs being acoustic. He was a self-taught musician who followed his instincts—the main reason his music has such a unique sound.

The band toured extensively in 2005 and 2006 visiting 23 countries, including a showcase at the South by Southwest music festival. They continued to tour in the US and occasionally in Europe and the UK until 2016. The band's 2003 release Regard The End, featuring Kristin Hersh as well as Chris Eckman of The Walkabouts, received critical acclaim with Uncut magazine naming it Album of the Month.

WGC released 10 studio albums and 5 live albums between 1996 and 2018, their final release "Untethered" being released posthumously after Robert Fisher died of cancer at the age of 59 on February 12, 2017. He was the beating heart of Willard Grant Conspiracy, was loved by many, and has left behind a legacy that will never die.

This is another band I didn't consider at all for a compilation, until hearing a track by them on BBC Radio 6 the other day. I hadn't really listened to much of their work for several years, despite enjoying the posthumous album "Untethered" which was a surprise release in 2018. So I dug out all the albums, enjoying once more the fine body of work they had released over the years. This collection includes tracks from all studio albums, but for once I've included a live track to end on. The track in question, "The Visitor", is probably my favourite WGC song, I have several versions of it, but my favourite rendition is on the live album "The Green, Green Grass Of Slovenia" which came out in the year 2000.

As ever, info containing track origin & year of release is tagged in the music files and in the download file. Stay safe (or alert!), and I hope you enjoy this latest collection.

  1. Bring It Down (6:36)
  2. Soft Hand (5:39)
  3. Massachusetts (4:00)
  4. Let It Roll (9:19)
  5. Painter Blue (5:23)
  6. Preparing for the Fall (7:43)
  7. Hideous Beast (1:55)
  8. No Such Thing as Clean (8:47)

  9. How to Get to Heaven (4:48)
10. Water & Roses (3:13)
11. Crush (5:42)
12. Incident at Mono Lake (4:13)
13. Untethered (4:21)
14. The Visitor (7:58)

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