EXCLUSIVE: Stream Knowlton Bourne album “Songs From Motel 43” in its entirety

by | Sep 25, 2015 | New Music and Video

We are super pumped to bring you the exclusive album premiere for Songs From Motel 43 by Knowlton Bourne. Stream it above and cop your own copy, out now on Misra Records.


When a dog has a broken leg, it’s taken out back and shot. When a man has
a broken soul he writes through the night. Recorded during a year he spent
working on a farm outside of Oxford, out of school and out of his mind,
Knowlton Bourne’s Songs From Motel 43 has a genuine youthful enthusiasm
that can’t be faked. It’s the sound of someone watching the world reveal
itself for the first time, each new experience something to be savored,
even the tragedy. It’s alive & awake & terrified & enraptured. Open up
your mouth and say awe.

Because he’s spent his whole life in Mississippi, 23-year-old Knowlton
Bourne can’t help sounding southern—it’s there in the twang you hear every
time he opens his mouth. But listen closely and you hear so much more than
americana. You can hear it in the hooks, you can hear it in the
arrangements, the popcraft that makes his songs stand out like knives.
Songs From Motel 43 is a perfectly paced album that builds upon itself
like a killer collection of short stories.

With one foot in the country and the other in the cosmos, it sounds at
times like a delirious collaboration between the Pernice Brothers and the
Verve. Call it Rural Hymns if you want to. Plenty of artists have written
a song called “Hangin’ Around.” Very few have written one that sounds like
it was influenced by Wire. And the Fennesz-like ambient second-half of “I
Can’t Tell/Run” is beautiful enough to get lost for in days. Harmonicas
are drenched in effects until they sound like synths, while synths are
treated until they sound like cicadas.

So it’s obvious Knowlton Bourne’s heard a hell of a lot of music in his
short life. Raised in a musical family—dad played Brian Eno records around
the house, mom played classical piano every night, an older sibling played
guitar—it was inevitable he’d make his own music one day. But it wasn’t
inevitable it’d be this good. Bourne combines the energy of youth with the
musical wisdom of someone twice his age. No wonder he appears destined for

In your early 20’s, everything is in motion, unstable & chaotic, always in
flux. Songs From Motel 43 embraces that feeling. It evokes the magic of
that first road trip, seeing the highway unfold in front of you, waking up
in strange places. It’s America as seen through a fresh set of eyes.
Everything in Knowlton Bourne’s lyrics might be looking down, but he
delivers them as if he can’t wait to find out what happens next.