Roger Knox & the Pine Valley Cosmonauts, Waco Brothers, Sally Timms | Szold Hall, Old Town School of Folk Music | Folk & Country | Chicago Reader

Roger Knox & the Pine Valley Cosmonauts, Waco Brothers, Sally Timms Member Picks All Ages Soundboard Recommended

When: Thu., Oct. 11, 8 p.m. 2012

In the late 90s Jon Langford created the Pine Valley Cosmonauts—a honky-tonk orchestra peopled at one time or another by just about every like-minded musician in the Welshman's wide orbit—to voice opposition to the death penalty. They raised money for the cause with three albums on Bloodshot and performances around the country, but for almost a decade they've been pretty quiet, with the exception of backing singer Rosie Flores on Girl of the Century in 2009. Next year, though, they're returning in force with Stranger in My Land (Bloodshot), a vibrant collection of aboriginal country songs. Country music caught on with Australia's disenfranchised and oppressed aboriginal population following the Second World War; they wrote drinking songs and prison laments, as well as the kind of material that appears on the forthcoming album—down-under civil-rights songs addressing feelings of racial alienation and making pleas for justice, all couched in the plainspoken language of vintage Nashville. Many of the tunes were previously collected on the out-of-print soundtrack CD for a documentary called Buried Country, and Langford sees the project as in part an act of preservation. On the album a large cast of vocalists, including Bonnie "Prince" Billy, Dave Alvin, Andre Williams, Kelly Hogan, Sally Timms, and the great Charlie Louvin (in what might be his final recording), complements the soulful, easygoing delivery of aboriginal singer Roger Knox. For this rare stateside performance Knox will take center stage, supported by most of Langford's Waco Brothers, Timms, Janet Bean, and possibly a few others. —Peter Margasak

Price: $12

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