The Lethargics have released the album “Hue & Cry”…presenting tracks that travel between Country, Soul and Classic Rock…The Lethargics is one of the most important names in the American scene… this band promises not to disappoint you.
Maladies & Melodies, released by lethargic records in February 2021, features guitar-driven, unflinching songs of life, love, loss and the human condition. Hue & Cry, released in March 2021, sees the band simultaneously sharpening and widening the scope of their brutally honest songwriting and impassioned sound. the lethargics have tracks receiving airplay on legendary radio station WDVX, as well as being chosen for several Influencer and Curator playlists.
the lethargics hail from Knoxville bearing guitars and an All-Spit-No-Polish approach to Alt Rock and Country music. the lethargics music stakes claim and establishes residence on and in both the abandoned and the undiscovered music landscapes of true Rock & Roll. Born in the hard beauty of the hills and hollers of Appalachia… …informed and inspired by the likes of Dylan, Springsteen, Knopfler, Ely, The Clash, The Replacements and The Stones… …steeped in the histories and mysteries of Rock, Blues, Punk, Country, Folk, and Americana… …the lethargics are simply not like any band you’ve ever heard before.
Had an interview with my guys from Knoxville Here… Here’s what they had to say.
Q: Lethargics, very happy to welcome you to the podcast community. Tell us a little bit more about yourselves. Introduce yourselves to the community.
A: We’re a bunch of east Tennessee hillbillies, with all the attendant shame and pride that comes with that. And thank you so much for having us! This is a great thing you are trying to accomplish here!
Q: – One thing that I’m always interested in, when I sit down and chat with artists is, what their defining moment was that they knew that they wanted to be in music… What was that moment in time for you?
A: – For me personally, it was Darkness on the Edge of Town that made me feel like I might not be all alone after all and that rock might be The Way. But we’ve all been steeped in music of one form or another all our lives
Q: – Tell me a little more about your album, “Hue and Cry”. What was your inspiration for this particular album?
A: – We had enough material from the Maladies & Melodies sessions to populate another record, and Hue & Cry started as that – but we wound up with so many new songs that only one from the old sessions made the cut. Hue & Cry became a more politicized record as it went. It’s actually a little scary to broadcast any of your views in song these days, but we felt like the personal viewpoint of the ones that wound up on the record were valid. We could be wrong, but with songs like “Hey” and “Burnin From Here,” you could be on whatever side and still claim the song for yourself. It’s hard to watch the news in the U.S. these days. Or anywhere else, I’d guess.
Q: – When I was an actual DJ way back when, I used to love performing live, Do you prefer studio life or live performances?
A: – Well, we’re pretty much a studio outfit for the foreseeable future. I mean, god yes, there’s nothing like playing live – but we have valid reasons beyond Covid not to go live for a while yet.
Q; – What is one thing that bothers you the most about trying to come up in the music world today and, do you prefer being underground or is the mainstream something you strive for?
A: – It’s frustrating to finally get to a point of overcoming your insecurities enough to seek the validation of strangers – to finally feel like you actually have something that just might be of some value – and then realize you are just spitting in the ocean. I don’t know if the old model or the new model of the “music business” is more stifling. We would certainly welcome some degree of financial reward for the lethargics, but I don’t see a time where that becomes what drives us to create. But, you know, if you want to buy our records, we won’t try to stop you!
Q: – You have a very unique sound. I remember I commented, “Red Right Hand” referencing Nick Cave of course as the melody was instantly recognizable. I feel that if I hear you guys when I’m out somewhere and your song is playing on the radio I’ll say to myself, “Hey, That’s The Lethargics”. Who are some of your bigger influences?
A: – You know, we love Nick and that song, but never really listened to him a lot or considered him as an influence. We get a lot of comments from people referencing Johnny Cash – who we adore, but don’t hear it in our stuff – and then some references to people we have never heard before, like Ray Wiley Hubbard. Our main gods are Dylan and Springsteen. Other admitted strong influences would be Mark Knopfler, Joe Ely, The Replacements, The Stones, The Clash, and Richard Thompson. We always have an Aimee Mann disc or two available.
Q: – One question that I like to ask artists is, how did Covid affect your music and, since you’re from Knoxville, the Knoxville music scene overall?
A: – For us, truthfully, not much. We’re pretty used to being oppressed and depressed and isolated. It may have focused our energies somewhat. Knoxville, which actually has a pretty cool live music scene, shut down the live venues completely. From what I see, it’s trying to slowly creep back.
Q: – I, myself, personally think that there’s too much social media out there to keep up with. What are your feelings on social media and music today?
A: – One of the major problems we face as a band is we don’t really have any social media accounts. You know, we’ve got Bandcamp and Spotify and stuff like that now, but learning how to navigate which social media platforms are now absolutely essential to a music career and which are not is a pretty steep curve. Again, in the old model, you had to get the ear of a very small number of industry pros who were choosing among a finite number of musicians in order to be successful. Now you have to get the ear of millions of people who are choosing among an infinite number of musicians, without any real criteria for what a musician really is – and who is really qualified to judge. It is a great and terrible time to be in the music biz!
Q: – When can we expect another song or album from you?
A: – Can’t really say. Depends on when the pendulum swings back to Manic for us.
Q: – I really want to thank you guys for chatting with us. Is there anything else you would like to add?
A: – Nah, we’ve already said more here than we usually do over a two-week span. Just want to reiterate our appreciation to you for the opportunity and for the Good Works you are doing for musicians!
The Lethargics links: https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/thelethargics/hue–cry
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