2017 Spring/Summer Country Preview: 25 Anticipated Albums, Festivals

From new releases by Angaleena Presley and Jason Isbell to annual blowouts like Stagecoach and CMA Music Festival

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John Moreland
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John Moreland

Album: Big Bad Luv
Release Date: May 5th
"Love ain’t a sickness, though I once thought it was," sings John Moreland in his raspy, tender croon on "Lies I Chose to Believe," a piano-driven confessional off his third album, Big Bad Luv. After two LPs of using life's darkest corners for poetic fuel, the Oklahoma-based Moreland got married, signed a record deal and started embracing music that doesn't just make lemonade out of lemons, but instead offers a different way to view contentment. And that's recognizing how the past always lingers in your shadow, even if you try to leave it behind. Before Big Bad Luv, tears were Moreland's currency – here, he manages to trade the sadness for a sense of purpose, always with a realist's eye. Expect Big Bad Luv to offer plenty of opportunities for healing, but little for denial. M.M.

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