DISMANTLING PARADISE is the brilliant first solo effort from singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Max Johnston, former member of Uncle Tupelo, Freakwater, Wilco, and The Gourds. Johnston spent the past two decades backing up some of the finest and most celebrated musicians in the Americana/Alt-Country genre. In his first solo release, he and producer Eric Jarvis employ members of Big Star, The Gourds, and other heavyweights to back him. One of Johnston’s primary songwriting strengths remains his ability to weave deeply personal stories into gorgeous and appealing melodies. While DISMANTLING PARADISE is technically Max Johnston’s debut record, he draws on decades of experience to deliver something much more reflective, subtle, and beautiful than the norm. DISMANTLING PARADISE is an official High Plains Films/MVD Entertainment release.
Distribution - MVD Audio
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“From the burnished opener ‘Lonely You’, which sounds like 1963-era Beatles filtered through pedal-steel country heaven, to the Burritos-style ‘Rolling Over’...rich songs marinated in a lifetime playing cosmic American music and an atmospherically plangent voice.” â˜…â˜…â˜…â˜…â˜…â˜…â˜…â˜… (8/10) Uncut (UK)
“Johnston tacks in his ten accessible songs beautifully between the pop of Wilco and roots music by The Gourds, with a hint of folk here or there sixties rock.” Alt-Country.nl
“You’ve probably never heard of Max Johnston, but if your finger’s been on the pulse of Americana over the past couple decades, you may be more familiar with him than you think. From his contributions in Uncle Tupelo and Wilco’s first two albums to his work as a member of The Gourds since 1999, the Texan multi-instrumentalist has made his mark while usually deferring the spotlight to someone else on the stage. On his first solo album, Dismantling Paradise, released by High Plains Films, Johnston pulls out a collection of casual, countrified porch songs that let his own voice and songwriting take the lead for a change. Members of The Gourds drop in to add some color, and producer Eric Jarvis lends generous portions of splashy steel guitar that tastefully underline the country influence. Johnston’s warm voice works best on the sleepy lullaby Next to You, and he does well by not overindulging in stereotypical Southern twang.” Missoula Independent
Preview all 10 tracks on DISMANTLING PARADISE.