ALT goes pond hopping

On his recently released album, Karma for Cheap (New West Records), New Albany native Aaron Lee Tasjan takes yet another left turn, and yet again he pulls it off.

Tasjan established an expectation-busting pattern on 2016's excellent Silver Tears. But while that album still sounds like it could have been made in Nashville, Karma for Cheap takes inspiration from Liverpool. Tasjan has cited The Beatles Anthology as one of the sonic touchstones for Karma for Cheap, and it's apparent from first track “If Not Now When” that Tasjan is wholly uninterested in adhering to whatever aesthetics are commonly associated with Americana music. He's perfectly comfortable writing songs that have more in common with John Lennon than John Prine.

And just when you think Tasjan is making a Brit-pop album, he incorporates call-outs to musical hero Tom Petty on “Heart Slows Down” and does the Everly Brothers proud on “Dream Dreamer.” (Safe bet)