When an album is recorded in an abandoned church in the desert of Terlingua, Texas, it’s hard not to be intrigued.
Fool’s Gold, the new album from country Americana songwriter Alma Russ, was indeed recorded in an abandoned Texas church, and the result does not disappoint. Hailing from Western North Carolina, Russ takes inspiration from country, folk, and Appalachian roots to curate her unique sound, playing fiddle, guitar, and the claw-hammer banjo.
The new record officially dropped on March 25th, and it was the title track, “Fool’s Gold,” that came across our proverbial desk and arrested our attention.
The single, “Fool’s Gold,” – and the whole album for that matter- is reminiscent of classic female country music with a healthy dose of folk and a tinge of blues. “All I need is a tank of gas and a little time,” croons Russ, opening her album with this nostalgic tune, an ode to her “restless heart”.
Having been inspired by the sound and music of female artists such as Emmylou Harris, Dolly Parton, Alison Krauss, and more, Russ has been on a musical journey since she was young. She began playing the fiddle at age twelve, leading into her pursuit of the claw-hammer banjo and naturally, the guitar later on. Having performed with bands for years, she made the move to pursue her own solo career as a singer and songwriter.
Russ has accrued notable achievements in her musical career, and was featured on the hit TV show American Idol, having received three “yeses” from the judges to earn her golden ticket to Hollywood. Since her Idol days, she’s been honing in on her songwriting, resulting in her latest album, Fool’s Gold.
The title (and leading) track immediately displays Russ’s expert string picking, as the song hits the gas from the get go, taking the listener on a golden country road of bright melodies and hypnotizing vocals. The feeling and emotion expressed throughout is palpable, and the fiddle and percussive shuffle is a strong driving force. The chorus is catchy, and is a delightful appetizer of what’s to come on the rest of the 9-track album.
Fool’s Gold is available on all streaming platforms.