There are two types of journey – into the world, and into the heart. Roots musician Adrian Kosky’s third album, The High Side of the Low End, chronicles both.
The 11 songs on the album were recorded in Adrian’s home town of Daylesford in Victoria.
They reflect both his increasingly frequent sojourns through the bars and bayous of the United States, and his introspective take on the scars of a life well lived.
A multi-instrumentalist and internationally recognised dulcimer player, Adrian employs wry humour and measured sadness to explore themes of travel and country town life. Heavily influenced by the Blues, Appalachian Folk and Bluegrass, the singer-songwriter takes his listeners into a world of sound that is at once intelligent and heart-felt.
His two previous albums – Frozen With Intent and Dirty White Music – have attracted rave reviews from roots aficionados in Australia, North America and Europe. The High Side of the Low End consolidates and extends his abilities – it is truly the album he was born to write and perform.
“I like the lower, simpler end of things in life – music, food, and so on,” he says of the album’s title.
“I prefer a nice pair of jeans to suit trousers, coffee shops to fine restaurants. I like quality, but not adornment. I might only use a couple of chords in a song, but I do my damn best with them.”
The High Side of the Low End was composed entirely on the dulcimer, with other instruments – acoustic and electric guitar, banjo, dobro, bass harmonica, blues harp, percussion and marimba – employed to embellish the mix.
As with his previous album, Adrian has collaborated with former Boom Crash Opera member and Sea Change composer Richard Pleasance. The result brings assured, uncluttered arrangements and the evident enjoyment of two highly skilled musicians comfortable playing together.
Since Dirty White Music Adrian has toured the US four times. He has performed everywhere from Jacksonville Florida to Seattle, including Memphis and New Orleans. His experiences formed much of the source material for this latest batch of songs – songs informed by hard-slog touring, smoky dives, the gradual realisation that his roots music dreams are coming true, and that all dreams come at a cost.