Monday, June 13, 2011

JD Malone & the Experts "Avalon" Streets July 12

On the debut release "Avalon" by JD Malone & the Experts you'll find an album of extraordinary roots rock that brings to mind the snarl and grit of a young Steve Earle, Tom Petty and John Mellencamp. This release also features a 37 minute DVD documentary of the band in studio rehearsals for the recording of the album and is accompanied by a 12-page, full-color booklet with all lyrics and personal bios of each member in the band. The 13 songs include the first radio single, "Just Like New" and a slammin' cover version of "Fortunate Son" (CCR). The album was recorded at Studio 4 in Conshohocken, PA with legendary Grammy winning engineer Phil Nicolo and executive producer Dean Sciarra ( The CD version includes 5 bonus tracks that are not available for download, making the CD a full 79 minutes long.

JD Malone, a Dad, husband, son, brother, friend, singer/songwriter and recovering philosopher was born and raised under a bright blue sky in the small town of Bennington in the Green Mountain State of Vermont. He writes and sings songs about love and hate, angels and demons and the universal struggle to feel safe under the stars.

On their new album, Avalon, JD Malone and The Experts are not out to invent something, but they sure go a long way towards perfecting it, as only experts do. Stylistically, the band's music is the sort that you might hear at a backwoods VFW Hall on a Saturday night, drawing on the radio-friendly catalogues of classic American roots-rockers like Creedence Clearwater Revival. Except JD Malone & The Experts are no lame cover band butchering Proud Mary.

They are a rock-solid band with a dynamic leader, singer and songwriter in JD Malone (imagine, say, Bruce Springsteen & The E-Street Band if they played modified country music), and their songs, as instantly recognizable as they may seem, are all Malone originals (with the exception of excellent covers of Fogerty's Fortunate Son on the CD and Tom Petty's "I Should Have Known It" on the bonus live in-studio DVD). While JD Malone is clearly in charge, much of Avalon's appeal comes from the remarkable chemistry of the band, including Malone (vocals, acoustic guitar), Avery Coffee (electric guitars, bg vocals), Tom Hampton (pedal and lap steel, 12-string, acoustic, resonator & electric guitars, bg vocals), Jim Miades (bass), Tommy Geddes (drums), and the extraordinary guest vocals of Jayda Hampton (especially on the beautifully wrenching Black Yodel).

They sound like they've been preparing for this moment all their lives, listening to the Everly Brothers, CCR, BoDeans, Allman Brothers, Tom Petty, et al, and crafting songs and a sound that their heroes would be proud of. The band is both tight (well-rehearsed but not rigid) and loose (spontaneous-sounding, not sloppy), placing equal emphasis on vocal and instrumental prowess with a good dose of twang. You'll want to cruise down the road with the windows open singing at the top of your lungs as if you were discovering Proud Mary for the first time on your car radio.

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