Paul Cauthen gives himself a drug-fueled pep talk and stares down a mechanical bull in the wild, bleary-eyed music video for his new song “Cocaine Country Dancing,” the first to be premiered from his upcoming LP Room 41.
Cowritten with Jason Burt, who shares in production credits on Room 41, “Cocaine Country Dancing” finds Cauthen reveling in his vices like never before, booming out a refrain of “Co-caine!” over a thick, funky rock groove. But beneath the depravity lurks a hollowed-out sadness, as the baritone big man promises to do whatever it takes to win another’s approval. “I’ll twist for ya baby/Hit a rip for ya baby/Take another shot, get lit for ya baby,” he sings.
The video for “Cocaine Country Dancing,” directed by Tim K and filmed at Electric Cowboy in Fort Worth, Texas, brings those themes into even starker relief. A flailing aftermath to the choreographed bombast of 2017’s “Saddle” video, it finds Cauthen in a lonely, disco-lit spiral, even as he builds up a little powdered courage to transform into his rhinestone alter ego. While his opening tirade provides some deranged comic relief, it takes on a tragic arc when the video winds up right back where it started.
Room 41 is Cauthen’s first release since last year’s Have Mercy EP, and his first full-length in two years. Named for the room at Dallas’ Belmont Hotel where he was living when he wrote it, the album sees the Texas native collaborating with several other songwriters and producers, including Beau Bedford and Jonathan Tyler. It’s due to be released September 6th via Lightning Rod Records.
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“I’ve written six songs in a day before,” Cauthen told Rolling Stone Country about his creative process, as the time of Have Mercy‘s release. “I’ll just be on a tear. Then I’ll go 10 days without picking up a guitar, because I get drunk for 10 days, I get wild with friends, I go water-skiing.”
The full track list for Room 41:
1. “Holy Ghost Fire” (Cauthen, Jason Burt)
2. “Prayed for Rain” (Cauthen, Ward Davis)
3. “Cocaine Country Dancing” (Cauthen, Burt)
4. “Slow Down” (Cauthen, Burt, Beau Bedford)
5. “Big Velvet” (Cauthen, Wesley Geiger)
6. “Can’t Be Alone” (Cauthen)
7. “Freak” (Cauthen, Bedford)
8. “Angel” (Cauthen, Bedford, Jonathan Tyler)
9. “Give Em Peace” (Cauthen)
10. “Lay Me Down” (Cauthen, Dan Cohen, Regan Schmidt)