The self-titled debut album from Willie and the Giant is a double shot of vintage rock and soul, tastefully wrapped and carried like a party gift into the now. Open it up and you'll find a few key ingredients missing from a lot of today's music—for starters, space, warmth and plenty of dynamic range. This one begs to be played on vinyl through a hot tube receiver and some big, boxy hi-fi speakers.
Which makes sense. The retro-minded Nashville band cut these new songs at all-analog studio Welcome to 1979, where an impressive list of legends and contemporaries have recorded before them—Todd Snider and Dave Schools' Hard Working Americans, The North Mississippi All-Stars, Those Darlins, Jason Isbell, even Animals frontman Eric Burdon.
"We wanted that warm, saturated sound that you can only get from tape," frontman Will Stewart says, "and Welcome to 1979 specializes in just that. It was cozy, too. Everything there is intentionally stylized to take you four decades back in time."