Current Joys - East My Love | RECORD STORE DAY

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1. Echoes of the Past
2. California Rain
3. Days of Heaven
4. Never Seen a Rose
5. Lullaby for the Lost
6. Oh, Sister
7. They Shoot Horses
8. Slowly Like the Windtormenta
9. Sister Christian 1
10. East My Love 1
11. Feelin' Groovy

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East My Love, the resplendent, country-tinged 12th album byCurrent Joys, feels familiar. It's meant to: the 12 songs contained within divedeep into the rich folklore of the American West to tell time-worn tales of loveand trauma, heartbreak and spiritual renewal. Cast with a warm glow andfinding Current Joys' Nick Rattigan tapping into some of his lushest, mosthigh-fidelity production to date, it's the kind of album that listeners could seethemselves within, and, hopefully, keep close when they're most in need ofreassurance or escapism. For Rattigan, though, it's all that and more.Rattigan wrote East My Love alone in the woods in Tennessee, withno cell reception and nobody in earshot for miles. Composed three yearsbefore Love + Pop, the experimental pop double record he released in 2023and 2024, the songs on East My Love felt too raw to confront until he felt welland truly out from underneath the cloud that had been cast over him.Rattigan describes the songs as "landmines" that, for years, threatened toupend his carefully balanced mental state. "They were just triggers thatwould put me back in this emotional space, and I think eventually I got to aplace where they were more comforting," he recalls. "That's what I hopepeople find out of the record - a solace from any anxieties or depressions."Along with that comfort comes pain, and an acknowledgementthat any repair requires some level of breakage. Lead single "California Rain"acts like a tableau depicting Rattigan's attempt to escape his demons, it'splacid lyrics a distinct counterpoint to the tidal-wave production: "Isn't it niceto get away?/Clearing my head up, and dull away the pain." It speaks to thealbum's constant coin-toss between peace and chaos: "It's like you're trying tooutrun your demons, but at a certain point, they become your friend, and youhave to walk alongside them," says Rattigan. "I feel like you don't know thatwhen you're suppressing them - when you're hiding them in the rain."At other points, Rattigan is more clear-eyed about the struggle ofmoving forward; opening track "Echoes of the Past," aches with theacknowledgement that inner peace exists on a knife's edge. "The world won'tend in blazing fire and brimstone - it'll end from us not learning from our pastand our mistakes," says Rattigan.There's a purity of catharsis that runs through these songs; writtenwithout pretense, they take base human needs and desires and fit them intoa grander tradition of American songwriting that takes in everything fromWillie Nelson to Bright Eyes. True to that, many of the songs on East My Love,due to their outside-looking-in perspective, play like standards. "Slowly LikeThe Wind," a simple voice-and-guitar ballad, finds Rattigan reassuring hissubject that "slowly like the wind" he'll help push them in the right directionin times of need. On "Lullaby for the Lost," which feels parched butemotionally rich, he urges himself to remember that "we'll get oh so strong"despite the depths of despair he may be feeling in the moment. "I wanted itto be very slow and meditative, with these punctuations of lyrics that I reallywanted to stick out. I felt like it was powerful to accentuate certain points, butalso let the song be a meditative comfort to the listener." That comfort can betraced back to an idea at the core of East My Love that Rattigan describessimply: "Everyone deserves peace of mind."