John Butler Trio, "April Uprising"
The John Butler Trio's latest album, "April Uprising," is the Australian frontman's most radio-friendly release to date. With a fresh lineup of backing musicians to keep the group's sound evolving, the 15-song set opens with the song "Revolution," a downtempo rocker that evokes feelings of a new beginning. On that track, Butler delivers weighty verses with a murmured hesitance punctuated by a rallying chorus ("Running through the hopelessness and shame, revolution already under way"). And the single "One Way Road" is a tire-swing summer rock cut with a shot of bluegrass and a little bit of California sunshine, while "Close to You" brings a bit more heaviness, centering on a '60s hard-rock lick. Straddling blues and bluegrass, the trio delivers an eclectic mix, lending a Southern-rock feel on the track "Don't Wanna See Your Face," a Celtic flair to its haunting "Ragged Mile" and even featuring steel pans on "Take Me.-Connor McKnight