There are two kinds of people in the world: those who love Christmas music, and those who don’t. For the former, December can be a brilliantly nostalgic time, with various staples – Nat ‘King’ Cole’s ‘The Christmas Song’, Mike Oldfield’s ‘In Dulce Jubilo’ and the contents of Phil Spector’s ‘A Christmas Gift For You’ – helping to reawaken thoughts of yesteryear. For the festive music fan, there’s always time to discover something new, of course, and Justine Couvault’s Red On Red label brings something extra to the yuletide table with ‘Home Fires Burning’. In mixing the traditional with the unexpected, it manages to be quite broad in appeal and cover a lot of ground, despite only featuring five tracks.
By the end of 2019, few people would have suggested we’d live through a year any more devastating than 2016. That year, famous musicians seemed to be dying on a weekly basis. 2020 had even more of a drastic effect on the music industry with a global pandemic putting a halt on gigs and forcing various small, grass roots venues to close their doors forever.
On the plus side – and you always have to look for a positive, even in the most dire of circumstances – a dramatic change in circumstances has forced musicians to change their way of working. For those with home studios, it’s meant we’ve seen an increase in output. We’ve even been given unexpected albums – right at the end of the year, there were surprise releases from Paul McCartney and Taylor Swift and various other interesting albums were put together remotely. …And as we take stock on a terrible year, it seems that the gift of recorded music has been one of our only constants: 2020 may have been an absolute bastard in so many ways, but we’ve all found new music to love.
A run of planned live gigs may have been off the table, but it’s been a busy year for Justine Covault. With her band Justine And The Unclean, she’s released a couple of great digital singles. She’s embraced country music with a new side project, Justine’s Black Threads. She has even hosted ‘The Mess Around’, a bunch of online live performances with friends, including power pop legend Kurt Baker and Tom Baker from The Dirty Truckers.
On top of that, Justine has just launched a brand new, independent record label. Red On Red Records will be releasing new music from Covault, but already has a few other great artists on its roster. More news on the label can be found in the below press release.
In 2017, Justine and The Unclean released their critically acclaimed debut album ‘Get Unclean’, a rousing collection of power pop and pop punk oriented material that really helped put singer Justine Couvalt on the map. A follow up EP (2018’s ‘Heartaches & Hot Problems’) brought fans another reason to get excited, proving the band wasn’t just a one-shot deal and also showing that they sounded just as natural when stepping out of their power pop comfort zone and applied their talents to a couple of much harder sounding riffs.