© 2022 90.5 WESA
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Adia Victoria, 'Magnolia Blues'

When it comes to music, mentioning "atmosphere" can feel superficial, like noticing the velvet drapes and cedarwood smell in a restaurant. But think of it another way: Atmosphere is the way ideology feels. Adia Victoria knows this. In the decade-plus she's spent perfecting her version of blues, the South Carolina-born Nashvillian has studied how the heavy air of the South — its buggy, vine-twisted landscapes and historical decadence, the stain of racism and cleansing downpours of resistance — shapes its people.

Co-produced by T-Bone Burnett, her new album A Southern Gothic (out Sept. 17) fully explores this experience. "Magnolia Blues" opens the curtain with a groove reminiscent of Geeshie Wiley and a sisterly choir lifting up Victoria's slow moan until it becomes a quiet roar. "Something in the air tonight," she chants, joined by fellow Nashvillians Margo Price and Kyshona. Indeed there is.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Ann Powers is NPR Music's critic and correspondent. She writes for NPR's music news blog, The Record, and she can be heard on NPR's newsmagazines and music programs.
WESA invites you to participate in an audience survey. We’re interested in how you use WESA and what you think of our services. Your responses will help us shape what you hear and read from WESA in the year to come. This is an anonymous survey; it takes about seven minutes to complete and there are several opportunities to provide comments and suggestions. You can take the survey through Tuesday 12/6.