Trouble in Mind

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Product Description

On his new album, Trouble In Mind, the 32 year-old Carll navigates his way through both stormy weather and calm, sun-drenched waters with ease, emerging with songs that melt even the hardest heart in town. Their impact is heightened by the fact that they're songs born of both immersion in the works of his songwriting heroes and plenty of real world experience.

Those elements certainly permeate Trouble In Mind, but there's a much sharper focus to the material, thanks in part, to more time in the studio and some great players sure to be familiar to roots-rock aficionados, including, Dan Baird, Darrell Scott, Will Kimbrough and former Flying Burrito Brother Al Perkins.

Carll's personality, emotional but never too sentimental, mischievous, funny, world-weary and sardonic, imbues every track of Trouble in Mind.

Customer Reviews:

  • Wow
    I stumbled upon this cd because it was linked to several others I had purchased. The samples seemed promising so I spent my precious music dollars on this cd. I found myself tapping my toe & smiling through my first listen to the entire cd. Hayes gritty voice fits his music perfectly. I especially like the upbeat, clever Downtown Girl and the irrervently humorous She Left Me for Jesus. This guy deserves a great Texas following. ...more info
  • Another solid release from Hayes Carll
    This is Hayes' third release, and first on now-legendary Lost Highway records. It's been a long road to get where Hayes is now, and he's earned every step along the way.

    This record is a slight departure from his previous releases, but it speaks honestly of his transition from quiet solo gigs in dark bars to gigs with the full band and a larger, more earnest crowds. Where the previous albums were more introspective, this album is a coming out party of sorts, with Hayes rocking and grooving all the way. While never a problem on previous releases, you won't find a dull moment here, either.

    The album starts with the solid co-write with Ray Wylie Hubbard, "Drunken Poet's Dream," a song that perfectly captures the spirit of Hayes' songwriting, before continuing in Hayes' tradition of tales of alcohol and broken dreams of love and happiness. Where others may be content to dwell in the darkness, Hayes finds beauty and spirit in these topics, bringing them to life and breathing some well-needed energy, humor, and a hint of redemption.

    Trouble in Mind draws to a close with what is possibly Hayes' most personal song to date, "Willing to Love Again," a beautiful song about forgiveness and mercy, before wrapping up with Hayes' trademark tongue-in-cheek humor on "She Left Me for Jesus," possibly Hayes' boldest lyrical styling to date.

    If this is your first exposure to Hayes, Trouble in Mind is a great place to start. While not capturing the fullest extent of his range, it repaves some already solid ground of his while exploring (very successfully) some new ground. For the full grasp of his talent, however, be sure to pick up his previous two works, particularly his self-released Little Rock, which is a triumph in not only quality, but also in the diversity in which he is able to master his art. For fans of contemporary country-folk and americana, Hayes Carll is an essential part of of your collection, and Trouble in Mind is no exception. Texas' secret troubador can't be contained anymore. Look for more greatness from Hayes in the years to come....more info
  • Witty, arch and funny hard Texas country
    Carll continues to make good on the deep Texas songwriting talent demonstrated on two previous albums. For this third release he moves onto the Lost Highway label, and picks up the considerable backing talents of Fats Kaplin, Darrell Scott, Will Kimbrough, and Dan Baird and others. Better yet, producer Brad Jones and engineer Mark Addison spend that instrumental firepower in support of Carll's vocals and his witty, incisive lyrics. While some may prefer the more primitive sound of his earlier albums, in retrospect they sound like demos for this more fully realized outing.

    The restlessness of Steve Earle courses through Carll's narratives and keenly observed portraits, but so does the irascible spark of Charlie Robinson and the tongue-in-cheek pathos of rock musician Ben Vaughn. The latter's wit is mirrored in the story of love lost to salvation, "She Left Me for Jesus" and the performing musician's litany of horrors, "I Got a Gig." Carll's drawl collides with the freewheeling blues and nasal syllables of Dylan's "Rainy Day Women #12 & #35" on "A Lover Like You," with the word `lover' drawn as if Tennessee Williams' Maggie the Cat sang ragged country blues. Carll stays sly, though his lyrics aren't always joking. "Don't Let Me Fall" pleads for forgiveness and support in the wake of moral failure, and his cover of Tom Waits' "I Don't Wanna Grow Up" is both petulant and preternaturally knowing. The rasp in Carll's voice can express resignation, dissipation, irreverence, cynicism and ire, but it always seems to be balanced with a wounded poet's optimism. The break-up of "It's a Shame" is mourned for the hope of what could have been rather than the loss, and Tom Waits' romantic Bowery sentiments are translated into rural images on "Beaumont."

    The album's cover art reaches back to Merle Haggard's early Capitol albums, but Carll's not as inconsolably self-deprecating as The Hag, and the twangy mix of instruments covers more ground. There's plenty of fiddle and steel, but also baritone guitar, six-string electric leads, harmonium, banjo and mandolin, and it's all deftly woven into backings that are modern in reach but traditional in effect, practiced in their looseness and anchored by the emotional abrasion of Carll's voice. Fans of Van Zandt, Earle, Nelson, Kristofferson, Shaver, Waits, Bruce & Charlie Robison, and Chris Knight will find much to love here. [?2008 hyperbolium dot com]...more info
  • Houston, we have a poet...
    The title I stole from another review I read of this CD. I've had this disc in heavy rotation for about 2 weeks now. Excellent stuff. More country than anything on country radio and yet still rockin' as well. If weren't for that geezer show "Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood" I would have missed out on this....more info
  • Texas' best kept secret is about to explode!
    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this CD!!

    Get it; as well as Flowers & Liquor and Little Rock, you won't be disappointed.


    ...more info
  • "She left me for Jesus" sucked me in (4.5 stars)
    I heard the song and laughed so hard, I looked up the album. The first song is Ray Wylie Hubbard's "Drunken Poet's Dream." The last is a hilarious cover of "I don't want to grow up." I was sold and the tracks in the middle weren't just empty filler. "Trouble" just kept on delivering.

    "Trouble in Mind" is a pretty good title for this bluesy sardonic collection of thoughtful and cynical humored country. This is Texas singer Carll's first release on a major label, Lost Highway.

    My only complaint with this CD is the sound quality which is worth half a star. It's marginal in iTunes format and acceptable on my stereo. But, for the quality of the musicianship and the thought in the lyrics--I'll be looking up the rest of Carll's music very shortly.

    Rebecca Kyle, May 2008 ...more info
  • Living The (Drunken Poet's) Dream
    My rating is really more like a four minus. The tunes on Trouble In Mind are easy to listen to, and Hayes Carll has a very engaging vocal personality. "I Don't Wanna Grow Up" and "Drunken Poet's Dream" about sum up the album--one of extended adolescence, full of drugs, alcohol, and casual relationships. Sure , on "Knockin' Over Whiskeys" and "Don't Let Me Fall" he hints at the negative consequences, but for the most part he revels in his life style. "I've Got a Gig" is an entertaining autobiographical tune, and "Faulkner Street" lends the album its title, reminiscing about "how'd we ever lose that time"--though the present times don't seem that much different, just the names and faces have changed. "She Left Me For Jesus" is one of those joke songs that (for me) becomes less funny and more obnoxious with repeat listenings. Overall recommended for a little musical escapism....more info
  • Superb Rootsy, Country-Blues Goodness
    Hayes has grown both as a songwriter and as a performer with this major label debut. I have been following his career for several years now and could not be more proud of this effort. Well worth it at twice the price!

    Do yourself a favor and check out his older stuff as well, particularly Little Rock and Flowers and Liquor. You will not be disappointed.


    -TW...more info
  • Terrible Recording Quality
    Lost Highway should be ashamed of themselves. Even in this ipod world this recording (ProTools) sounds as if it were recorded in a tin barn (and is as metallic sounding as only bad digital can be)! Cmon guys - you can do better than this for a very talented singer/songwriter. Buy "Little Rock" and skip this one (unless they rerecord it - which probably will never happen). If you enjoy rubbing your fingernails on fine grit sandpaper - then by all means - put the disk in the tray and turn it up! ...more info
  • Hayes Carll CD
    I love Hayes Carll's new CD. I gave it to my boyfriend for a gift and we listen to it everyday. Thanks for suggesting it. We had never heard of him before then and we will continue to seek out his music....more info
  • My favorite record of the year thus far
    This is my first review, but I just had to express my appreciation for this record. This is my first Carll experience as well, and I loved it immidiately; I even write this as I'm listening to the record for the first time. When I turned on the first track, my brother asked me if it was his label-mate Ryan Adams, and that was the first thing that struck me as well, but in later songs he clearly touches Guy Clark, whom he co-wrote a song with on his previous album, and Ray Wylie Hubbard, whom he co-wrote the first track on this album with, as well as a number off of his previous album. It's a really fun album to listen to, particularly the blues-rocker "I Got a Gig" and the last song of the album, "She Left Me for Jesus", which I'm currently listening to. There are also some achingly beautiful songs on here. I also enjoyed his take on Tom Waits' "I Don't Wanna Grow Up".

    Hayes Carll is a great songwriter and a talented musician whom I am very envious of. I highly recommend this album. Can't wait to give a listen to his first couple of albums....more info
  • keep goin
    love hayes, just wish he'd play my way. i guess i don't have the ear like some of the other reviewers cause i didn't have sound issues....more info
  • Hayes Carll is Way Cool!!
    Hayes Carll is the new face of country music for me and this album is fantastic. Funny, outrageous, touching and just plain fun! Great songs, great lyrics and funny stories - It's all here and just in time to lift your spirits for 2009. Buy this album and keep it in the CD player 'cause you'll listen to it over and over. ...more info
  • Witty, fun, true Texas country
    I'd never heard of Hayes Carll. I mean, here in Illinois, we don't get a whole lot of info about Texas musicians, unless they sell out and go national (Pat Green, Jack Ingram, etc), or have a long-standing history of being songwriting legends (Willie Nelson, Billy Joe Shaver, etc). So when I read a review of this album in a magazine, I basically skimmed it over--until I read that Carll covered a Tom Waits tune. That stopped me. Texas country singers are known for their, um, guts...but covering a Tom Waits tune? That can make or break ya. I just had to check it out.

    Well, I'm glad I did. The Waits tune is "I Don't Wanna Grow Up," and Carll certainly does a good job covering it. But, let's face it--there's a hell of a lot more. Carll's own songwriting is downright admirable: from the fun-loving (yet dark-undertoned) "Drunken Poet's Dream" to the heart-wrenching "Willing to Love Again," Carll proves that he can hold his own amongst his legendary songwriting neighbors. "She Left Me For Jesus" is of course the attention-grabbing tune here, bound to offend anyone with weak sensibilities who can't detect irony; but there's more to the album than that, too. "I Got a Gig" perfectly captures the troubled arrogant stance of a six-night-a-week musician (as Carll growls "Good Lord I hope I get paid tonight/I got a gig, baby!"); "Bad Liver and a Broken Heart" pretty much sums up the songwriter's ambition ("Doesn't anybody care about the truth anymore/I guess that's what songs are for"); and "A Lover Like You" takes playful honky-tonk jabs at the opposite sex ("I could never be friends with a lover like you").

    Hayes Carll is a force to be reckoned with. He's bound for glory; maybe not commercial fame, but that's never been a good judge of talent, anyways. Carll is the real deal; he's a honky-tonk poet, and radio just isn't ready for that yet. One day, maybe. But until then, we can all sit back, listen to TROUBLE IN MIND, and realize that here, right here, is one of the new great songwriters on the country music circuit....more info
  • He is Great, Just plane, good, music, you can understand
    Saw Hayes Carll on Imus in the Morning, He is Great, Just Plane Good Music, you can understand.
    I saw him on Imus in the morning. And had to go out & buy this one.
    Don Imus's, Imus in the Morning, is a great place to hear good music. From Older bands that are still good but don't have the top 40 stuff.
    This is some of the best listening music I have heard in a long time. BUY THIS, YOU WON'T REGRET IT! ...more info
  • Great. His best yet and that's saying a lot
    I loved both of Hayes' other albums. Each was unique in it's own way and in it's own way trumped the other. "Trouble In Mind" is a breath of fresh air. One of the best albums I have listened to in a couple of years now. We need more artists like Hayes. Do yourself a favor, buy this unbelievable album, you will not be disappointed if you are an Americana fan. I bought the album this morning and have listened to it three times all the way through....more info
  • Went for the Trifecta and did it
    This is another example of great songwriting and personality coming through an album. Hayes keeps getting betetr and his maturity hasn't affected his devil may care attitude. He is the best...more info
  • amazing
    Hayes continues to amaze me with his songwriting and the flow of his music! I love everything about this album and can't seem to take it out of the cd player!! Congrats man...more info
  • Laid Back Fun
    It's nice to enjoy an album that is just plain fun with great guitar and fantastic band playing perfectly with a singer with fascinating lyrics that sometimes make me laugh out loud. If you enjoy a touch of country mixed with a touch of rock and you have a free spirit, this one is truly for you. I particularly love "She Left Me for Jesus", the humor that glides through the song of a poor fellow whose girlfriend tells him she has become saved by Jesus with him confused is pure knock out funny. And a "Girl Downtown" about a simple boy meeting simply girl with plunking guitar is another fun one that is just entertaining fun that sounds great particular with backing vocals that sound like a mature Dolly Parton. There are beautiful songs as well such as "It's a Shame" about two potential lovers that somehow just missed. I played this album several times and I have never tired of Carll's voice , he matches the empathy of whatever song he sings, joy or sorrow, he sings just the way the song writer wants it sung. My only regret is that Carll is not touring in VA!...more info
  • Thank you, WUTC-FM
    Smokey, hard-livin', hard-lovin' rock 'n roll lyrics may not be the life recipe most of us end up choosing, but I sure do love the sense of humor, and rambunctious, devil-may-care rhythm of these songs. I first heard Hayes Carll on my local public radio station, WUTC, Chattanooga, and bought it on an impulse. Glad I did. ...more info
  • Solid
    Very solid. Hayes doesn't disappoint, clever lines, good hooks. Mainstream country radio won't touch it with a ten foot pole, but if they would then it wouldn't be good would it? Hayes plants himself firmly in the great tradition of Texas singer songwriters with this effort. ...more info
  • An introduction to someone I already knew
    Just got a copy of Hayes Carll's "Trouble in Mind".
    Let me state at the outset that I really wanted to find something to dislike about this album/artist. Really. I put on my cynical big boy pants and black beret and tried to poke him with the derivative mashup label (which would rightfully stick), but it seemed like he just donned it like a Wall Drug trademark and waved it at me. And it worked.
    Carll is the unholy spawn of a "Country Bob" Dylan, pre-prison Steve Earll, an apolitical John Prine with a couple of fingers of Hank Williams. Roll `em all up, give `em a tax stimulus check and send them out into the south east Texas night to find a bar with generic neon beer signs and you have Hayes Carll.
    Funny as hell without working too hard for it, interesting like a hand waving bar conversation between William S, Burroughs and Dolly Parton and just plain enjoyable. If you like the badboy/ stuff this would be a great addition to your collection. It should come with a bottle of whiskey (of uncertain pedigree) know, the kind you get drunk on rather than sip.
    ...more info
  • Easily the Best Country Album of 2008
    Hayes Carll's newest offering, Trouble In Mind, is easily the best country album of the year and maybe in a few years. Carll mixes a health dose of Americana with a little outlaw country to get one of the most interesting sounds in a long time. Hayes is also a good songwriter, which is a talent somewhat lost on many Nashville new-comers these days.

    "Drunken Poet's Dream" is a great way to start off the album and sets the stage for what is to come. A good honky-tonk song with a little edge. "It's a Shame" is easily my favorite song on the album and may be a song of the year candidate if country radio would ever play it. "Bad Liver and a Broken Heart" is another good classic country song that would fit well in any bar room in Texas. And "She Left Me For Jesus" is a great tune and has already recieved some media attention.

    All things considered, this is just one great album. I liked it initially, but it has grown on me even more as time has gone on. Hayes Carll just may be the next big thing in country music. ...more info
  • Oh Hayes......
    First off, what a dreadful tinny recording, either the recording engineer or the mastering engineer should be taken out and shot at dawn!! I played Ryan Bingham's Mescalito straight after this (also on Lost Highway) and it is in a different league from a sound quality perspective (better music too).

    As for the CD, I have to say I find much less satisfying than either Flowers & Liquor or Little Rock. I am a huge Hayes fan and have seen live a few times and he is fantastic on stage but on this CD it seems like he is trying too hard and the songs have lost much of the spontaneity and freshness of his debut and sophomore efforts. It may be that now Hayes has "made it" with a deal with Lost Highway records it seems like he has over thought the arrangements and is trying too hard. Both of his first two CD's are much better than this one. I give it 3 stars only a Hayes fan........more info


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