It’s no big secret that Margo Price has been writing new music since the release of her critically acclaimed LP Midwest Farmer’s Daughter at the beginning of 2016. The Nashville singer-songwriter has been keeping a busy tour schedule and incorporating some of that new material into her live sets, and has even discussed the possibility of her follow-up album being a double LP. In the short term, however, she unveiled four new songs today, surprise releasing an EP titled Weakness.
At least two of the songs on Weakness, “Paper Cowboy” and the title track, have become staples of Price’s shows with her band, the Pricetags, including at her rousing set at last month’s Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. “Weakness” is a Jekyll-and-Hyde barroom boogie, while “Paper Cowboy,” written by Matt Gardner, is a skittering, six-minute vamp that builds into an all-out guitar jam, perfect for a mid-set instrumental break.
Two of the songs on the EP – the title track and “Just Like Love” – were written by Price and Jeremy Ivey, her husband and bandmate. Ivey penned “Good Luck,” dedicated to beloved Nashville drummer Ben Eyestone, who died earlier this month, by himself. Not appearing on the EP, however, are two songs expected to be included on her next LP, “All-American Made” and “Heart of America.”
“There are still some very country moments, but there will be a lot of other things on the record, because that’s what keeps me interested,” Price told Rolling Stone Country last December, referring to the forthcoming new album. “Three chords and the truth is the cliché – I like to throw a couple extra chords in there.”
As with Midwest Farmer’s Daughter, Price recorded Weakness with producer Matt Ross-Spang in Memphis. Instead of returning to Sun Studios, she used the larger Sam Phillips Recording space that the Sun founder opened in the late Fifties. Alex Munoz, Ivey and Price also share production credits.
Weakness is available digitally today but will see physical release tomorrow via Third Man Records. The vinyl EP will be packaged as a pair of two-song 45s, with “Weakness” and “Paper Cowboy” the A sides. Price plays at Hopkins Center for the Arts at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, tonight with John Prine.