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Former Austinite Amy Boone shines in the Delines

Peter Blackstock
pblackstock@statesman.com
Former Austinite Amy Boone is the singer for Portland, Oregon, band the Delines. [Contributed]

Austin360 On The Record is a weekly roundup of new, recent and upcoming releases by local and Austin-associated recording artists.

LOCAL RELATED

Delines, “The Imperial” (Decor/El Cortez). Two decades ago, sisters Deborah Kelly and Amy Boone fronted the Damnations, one of the best alt-country bands ever to call Austin home. They live in Oregon now, and Boone has had a rough couple of years recovering from significant injuries suffered when she was hit by a car in East Austin. But when Boone teamed up with songwriter Willy Vlautin of longtime Portland group Richmond Fontaine for the Delines’ 2014 debut “Colfax,” they struck an immediate magic spark. Vlautin’s vivid portraits of down-and-out characters found a perfect match in the world-weary soul of Boone’s vocals. “The Imperial” picks up where that album left off, setting hard-luck stories from the streets to rich, dark melodic moods. A master storyteller with five acclaimed novels grounded in working-class toil and trouble, Vlautin paints pictures of desperate day-drinkers, star-crossed couples and ill-fated teenagers. Graceful touches of pedal steel, horns and strings flesh out the subtle guitar-bass-drums frame, allowing Boone’s raw emotion to delve deep into the heart of the human condition. Her tone borrows from old-school country but feels more closely related to the wee-hours jazz of classic Sinatra. If you recall the masterful vibe the Cowboy Junkies captured on their landmark 1988 album “The Trinity Session,” that’s roughly the territory the Delines have reached sonically. The band’s limited touring has taken place mostly overseas, and that’s a shame, because both “Colfax” and “The Imperial” rank with the best American records of the decade. Here’s the opening track, “Cheer Up Charley”:

OUT THIS WEEK

Smiile, “Mystical Experience”/“Someone Who Can Do Both.” The buoyant-indie-pop band plans to release 12 songs digitally in the first half of 2019, unveiling two new ones on the 13th of each month from now through June. They’ll combine them all for a physical release at the end of the year. Here’s the video for “Mystical Experience”:

COMING SOON

JAN. 25: Hunt Sales Memorial, “Get Your (Expletive) Together” (Big Legal Mess/Fat Possum), in-store Jan. 24 at Waterloo Records.

JAN. 25: Terry Klein, “Tex,” release shows Feb. 15-16 at Townsend.

JAN. 31: Kenny Williams, “Sings” EP, playing Jan. 24 and Jan. 31 at Parker Jazz Club.

FEB. 1: Bright Light Social Hour, “Jude Vol. 1” (Modern Outsider), in-store Feb. 1 at Waterloo Records.

FEB. 1: A. Sinclair, “Catpaws” (Nine Mile), in-store Jan. 28 at Waterloo Records, release show Feb. 2 at Mohawk.

FEB. 1: Go Fever, “Daydream Hawker” EP, release show Feb. 2 at Cheer Up Charlie’s, in-store Feb. 17 at Waterloo Records.

FEB. 1: Quiet Company, “On Corners & Shapes” EP, release show Feb. 1 at Mohawk.

FEB. 5: George Ensle, “Home” (Berkalin), release show Feb. 9 at Threadgill’s.

FEB. 8: Gurf Morlix, “Impossible Blue” (Rootball).

FEB. 8: Atlamesa, “Idol Frontier,” release show Feb. 8 at Cheer Up Charlie’s.

FEB. 8: Charlie Faye & the Fayettes, “The Whole Shebang.”

FEB. 8: Mamahawk, “Brain Invaderz,” in-store Feb. 8 at Waterloo Records.

FEB. 8: Rebecca Loebe, “Give Up Your Ghosts” (Blue Corn), in-store Jan. 29 at Waterloo Records.

FEB. 8: Daisy O’Connor, “Ether,” release show Feb. 10 at Cosmic.

FEB. 14: Harlem, “Oh Boy,” release show Feb. 16 at Antone’s.

FEB. 15: Hayes Carll, “What It Is” (Dualtone).

FEB. 22: Moving Panoramas, “In Two” (Modern Outsider), in-store Feb. 22 at Waterloo Records.

FEB. 22: Frederico7, “Exotico Americano,” release show Feb. 23 at Empire.

MARCH 1: Gary Clark Jr., “This Land” (Warner Bros.)

MARCH 8: Patty Griffin, self-titled (PGM/Thirty Tigers).

MARCH 8: Danny Schmidt, “Standard Deviation.”

APRIL 5: Brandon Wayne DeMaris, “Brave Bones,” release show April 10 at Antone’s.

READ MORE: Check out previous Austin360 On The Record roundups