Texas singer-songwriter Israel Nash is not a country artist. Single “Down In the Country,” put out during quarantine ahead of a spontaneous five-song EP that will comprise half of the musician’s upcoming LP Topaz, is a testament to this. The track was originally intended to be an A side on the full length album, but Nash changed his mind and decided to release it back in April. All blues, rock, and brass, “Down In the Country” is Stephanie’s DJ Pick of the Week.
“Down In the Country” is political. Nash explains in an interview with American Songwriter, “With devastated towns, family farms, the shuttering of factories, there is a real burden that unfortunately makes many vulnerable to the empty promises of those motivated purely by political and economic gains. This is a song about the people. Great things happen when we get the truth. We come together and we act on it. We really are all in this together. Remember that – now, more than ever.” Inspired in part by the 2019 documentary series No One Saw A Thing and his own upbringing in small-town Missouri, “Down In the Country” tackles the rural American perspective.
Stuck in the hard times
We are the forgotten kind
I’m calling out from below the line
How long will old sam let it slide
Despite the gravity of “Down In the Country’s” message, the single is fun and danceable. Featuring horn accompaniment from Austin collective Hard Proof, it’s easy to get lost in the guitar riffs and brass section of the track. Topaz was recorded at Nash’s home studio in the tiny town of Dripping Springs, Texas and will be released in full on March 12th by Soundly Music.
Be sure to tune into 100.1 FM or lightning100.com to hear “Down In the Country” by Israel Nash featured as Stephanie’s DJ Pick of the Week. Be sure to let us know your thoughts! Tweet at us with #L100DJPick and share your take on the track.