Shovels & Rope have released two new tracks from their forthcoming album By Blood, with “Mississippi Nuthin'” and “Carry Me Home” available for streaming.
Beginning with some floor-tom-pounding drums before abruptly jumping to briskly strummed acoustic guitar, the urgent “Mississippi Nuthin'” imagines a pair of acquaintances who have seen their circumstances reversed in the days since high school. One, a former star athlete, makes an elevator pitch to the other in hopes of getting rich and then lashes out with a reminder of their former stations when it doesn’t go his way. “You tried to drive and wrecked your car/And I had to help you wash the blood out of your hair,” he snarls, with Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst’s intertwined voices straining, almost screaming the lyric with fury as the music gets more feverish.
The soaring “Carry Me Home,” on the other hand, gives a glimpse at the internal dynamics of being in a working relationship with one’s spouse — moments of selfishness, long rides with Full Moon Fever blaring and the feeling of not being able to survive without one another.
By Blood, the duo’s fifth album, will be released April 12th. That same weekend, Shovels & Rope will host the 2019 High Water Fest in their adopted hometown of Charleston, South Carolina. Performers on the bill include Leon Bridges, Jenny Lewis, Mitski, the War and Treaty and Hayes Carll.