Country music, Americana, Bluegrass and Folk are some of the most closely related sounds out there today. They are so closely related that it is easier to find acts from the noted genres on one radio station oftentimes than bands in the worlds of rock and metal. It seems that there are much more finely defined lines in those two worlds even with their similarities. Considering that the noted genres tend to be so close to one another, it is easier to group them all together in one list for the purpose of the year’s best new albums. That having been noted, this critic’s list of the year’s top new albums from those realms is spread widely across each one. Topping this year’s list of the best new country/bluegrass/Americana/Folk albums is Chris Stapleton’s latest offering, From A Room: Volume 2. From start to finish, this record takes listeners back to the good old days of country while also touching on southern rock and even some blues. That’s just the musical aspect of his latest album. The lyrical content works expertly with each arrangement. If you are a country, blues and southern rock fan but haven’t yet picked up this record, get it. Period. Also on this year’s list are new releases from North Carolina-based outfit Mipso, David Messier, Zakk Brown Band and others. It runs the gamut.
As with every other list, this list features the year’s Top 10 new albums plus five additional honorable mention titles for a total of 15 albums. Without any further ado, here for your consideration is the Phil’s Picks 2017 Top 10 New Country/Bluegrass/Americana/Folk Albums.
PHIL’S PICKS 2017 TOP 10 NEW COUNTRY/BLUEGRASS/AMERICANA/FOLK ALBUMS
- Chris Stapleton — From A Room: Vol. 2
- Andrew Carter — Andrew Carter
- Josh Turrner — Deep South
- Brad Paisley — Love and War
- David Messier — Waiting For Eldridge
- Hank, Pattie & The Current — Hold Your Head Up High
- The Infamous Stringdusters — Laws of Gravity
- Mipso — Coming Down The Mountain
- Mike Mangione & The Kin — But I’ve Seen The Stars
- Outlaws & Moonshine — The Devil In The Moonshine
- Buzz Cason — Passion
- Luke Combs — This One’s For You
- Darius Rucker — When Was The Last Time
- Zac Brown Band — Welcome Home
- Toby Keith — The Bus Songs
While the list above is this critic’s own list of the year’s top new records from the country/bluegrass/Americana/Folk realm. There were certainly more albums than what’s listed here that deserve at least one listen including Lady Antebellum’s latest album Heartbreak, Luke Bryan’s What Makes You Country, Rascal Flatts’ This Is Us and so many others. Keeping that in mind, there is plenty out there for fans of every noted genre within that universe.
Next up from Phil’s Picks are lots more lists to try to get to before the year lets out. Lots to do and not enough time, so we’re going to step things up from here. There are new Children’s albums, rock records, hard rock/metal, live recordings, and the DVD realm. So there will likely be multiple lists from this point forward. Stay tuned!