10 New Country Artists You Need to Know: March 2018

From the Hank Jr. honky-tonk of Dillon Carmichael to the ethereal Laurel Canyon folk-pop of Savannah Conley

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Western Centuries
Joseph Vidrine8/10

Western Centuries

Sounds Like: The best damn honky-tonk bar band ever to claim Seattle as home

For Fans of: Tyler Childers, Colter Wall, Sturgill Simpson

Why You Should Pay Attention: Thanks to the work of artists like Chris Stapleton, Brothers Osborne and Sturgill Simpson, bar bands are back in style. Western Centuries, members of which split their time between Seattle and New York, have pieced together influences they've accumulated playing and listening in bars and clubs across the country – including creole, Delta blues and classic George Jones – to form a sound that dips in and out of genres with ease. It's a sound whose defining sensibility is its reverence for American roots music in all its incarnations. With three principal songwriters, things could get a little disjointed, but it's that shared passion that makes their forthcoming album Songs From the Deluge a captivating listen from start to finish.

They Say: "Having a project that is based around three frontmen that sing their own material is such a joy to be a part of," the band's Ethan Lawton says. "Practically speaking, it's a breeze. Everyone writes their own songs and with the exception of some arrangement suggestions, the songs come to the table fully formed. Having three songwriters means we are never short on material. Though we rarely collaborate on songwriting, the atmosphere around Western Centuries is such a creative platform for us to share music and bounce ideas off of each other. Our shared interests often filter into each other's music – influencing the overall sound of Western Centuries."

Hear for Yourself: A honky-tonk foundation underlays "Far From Home," atop which the band adds Cajun flourishes and some classic steel guitar. B.M.

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