The Kernal. ‘Listen To The Blood’/ Single Lock Records
The Kernal is best known for a distinctive brand of songwriting that’s “sweetly subversive, intellectual and addictive” (Rolling Stone) all at once, but if there’s a second thing the Jackson, Tennessee native is best known for it’s perhaps his signature red polyester suit. Once a prized possession of his late father, a Grand Ole Opry musician for thirty years, the inclusion of the suit in The Kernal’s nightly wardrobe is a way of sorts to carry on his legacy while also “ironing out some demons,” as he puts it, in an attempt to posthumously tie up their loose ends. After two albums and nearly a decade on the road, The Kernal’s upcoming Listen To The Blood (January 14 / Single Lock Records) works to find closure from those family burdens - fittingly featuring the red suit in the midst of a murder scene on the album’s cover along with a real-life plan to bury it in an Iowa cornfield later this year “to mark the end of my relationship with these past matters.” Fusing a storyteller’s eye reminiscent of Tom T. Hall and Roger Miller with raucous energy poised to get an entire late-night bar or day-time barbecue on their feet, Listen To The Blood is the sound of The Kernal finally coming to terms with the past in order to embark on his next chapter.