Daily Distraction: Take a 'Joy Ride' with Nathan Bowles and Bill MacKay

Andy Downing
adowning@columbusalive.com

In past interviews, Nathan Bowles described a tendency to "navel gaze" in his own music. "I sort of find a space mentally to focus on and then try to go as deep as I can,” he said in 2018.

But working alongside Chicago guitarist Bill MacKay for new collaborative album Keys, out next month via Drag City, the Appalachian folkie, who makes his home in Durham, North Carolina, appears to have adopted a more outward pose. Witness toe-tapping lead single "Joy Ride," which you can listen to in full below.

The kinetic effect is similar to one Bowles uncovered previously playing as a trio alongside Cave drummer Rex McMurry and double bass player Casey Toll (Mount Moriah, Jake Xerxes Fussell). “It’s a matter of generating a certain head of steam,” Bowles said at the time. “It sort of gets people nodding along.”

 

The album cover for "Keys"