Review of Jeremy Nail album ‘My Mountain’

After a multi-year hiatus, Jeremy Nail returned with My Mountain – A country-infused record with ample nods to classic rock.

Jeremy Nail is a singer/songwriter and guitarist out of Texas. After working with other bands for a while, Nail released his debut album Letter in 2008. Though his career was on the rise, the artist had to step back for several years to recover from sudden-onset Sarcoma. Now eight years later, Nail produced a follow-up album entitled My Mountain. With production by Alejandro Escovedo and a band of Austin musicians, Nail’s new album feels full and honest.

My Mountain kicks off with the title track. Featuring soulful guitars and subtle but strong vocals, there is something Dylan-esque about the presentation. Additionally, effective background vocals weave in, bolstering the sound without changing the mood. Undeniable folk influences play through “My Mountain,” but it strikes listeners as closer to late ‘60s rock than country.

 

 

Jeremy Nail introduces country's sedate brother

Following on My Mountain is “Down to the Ocean,” representing a sedate and darker brother to country. Therein, Jeremy Nail delivers a somber and contemplative tune without becoming outright depressing. Quickly shifting to the brighter side, “Dreams” contains a lighter air. While maintaining strong guitar work, this song feels less weighted down than previous tracks. However, the tune never strays as far as peppy.

Within My Mountain are a few well-executed, slow and gentle tunes. “Survive,” “The Great Mystery” and “Brave” are among these. Demonstrating the highest concentration of country influence, each sounds sentimental and honest.

A gem in the middle of this album is “Only Love.” Something in the reverb and arrangement is reminiscent of the Doors. Meanwhile, breathier vocals add a personal feeling to the track, pulling listeners in. Another standout is “New Frontier.” Like the soundtrack to a dream state, this song is full of heart but somehow distant.

My Mountain closes with “Tell Me What Else You Got.” A satisfying last track, it feels direct and true – like a conversation rather than a performance. Jeremy Nail seems to place life experiences directly into his music. Fans may be caught off guard at first, as it is difficult to place Nail’s music into a specific box. However, upon further listening, My Mountain will draw audiences in with a unique blend of folk, country, classic rock and soul.

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