Incitation [n]: an act of inciting, stimulation.
Intimacy [n]: a close association with or detailed knowledge of a subject.
Dissolution [n]: the undoing, or breaking, of a bond.
Denouement [n]: the final resolution of the intricacies of a plot.
Produced by Dwight A. Baker (The Wind & The Wave), ‘Front Row Seat’ was recorded at Matchbox Studios in Austin and yielded some of Josh’s most emotional recording sessions to date. The album also features collaborations with heavy-hitting songwriters including GRAMMY winner Shane McAnally and Zac Brown Band collaborator Wyatt Durette who helped contribute to the album’s theatrical progression through the five acts. The band also brought in rising vocalists Macy Maloy and Carly Pearce to lend their voices to the album’s female protagonist on two songs, evoking the emotion of single “Oh Tonight” off their 2012 ‘She’s Like Texas’ EP featuring a then-unknown Texan named Kacey Musgraves.
The album begins with a one-two punch of banjo and acoustic guitar on “While I’m Young”, the kick off to the Exposition act, that sees Josh capturing the electric energy of a night on the town with no worries of having cash or meeting a curfew and enjoying some no-strings-attached flirtations on “I’ve Been Known”.
Entering into the Incitation act, a shift is marked by stand-out track “Wasn’t That Drunk”, with Carly’s smoky vocals echoing Josh’s admission that an intoxicated kiss was long in the making. The protagonist of the album has fallen in lust, and the act is marked by the warble of banjo and the plain-spoken declaration on “Kiss You Good”.
The walls begin to break down on the Intimacy act, with Josh singing sweet nothings on “Crazy Things” and “Kisses We Steal” in the tone of a man whose fallen head over heels. “Front Row Seat” extolls the joy of knowing you have a firsthand look at the inner workings of your partner’s mind, and the rest of the world only gets a fleeting glimpse.
The comfort of shared intimacy is not to be for long, and the next Act, Dissolution, identifies the problems that can lead to the break up of any relationship. “Ghosts” takes the album in a darker direction, a solemn number with a man admitting his role in a relationship falling apart. “This Isn’t Easy” is a wounded man imploring for understanding and empathy.
Dénouement (French for “aftermath”) caps the album and marks the desolation of coming to terms with the end of a relationship and the realization that someone who was once a partner is now a stranger. Lead single “Amnesia” is a plea to being physically overtaken by the loss of memory rather than going on remembering the joy of the relationship. Opening with a lone guitar, “Anonymity” reaches the quiet conclusion of a love best explored slowly, under the safety of darkness, and closes out the album.
Hailed as one of the “top tier TX country acts of this decade (Houston Press),” Josh Abbott Band is renowned for heartfelt songwriting and traditional instrumentation stoked by a Texas twang. ‘Tuesday Night’ (out in 2014 on Atlantic), debuted at #12 on the Billboard Country Album chart and established the band as “one of the rising stars in a country scene that spans both Texas and Nashville (Texas Monthly)”. Additionally, the band’s first three Independent projects saw release on Josh’s own Pretty Damn Tough label and sold over 175,000 copies total and 1.4 million singles. The band sold 741,590 concert tickets in the past two years alone and is out on the ‘Where’s the Party?’ tour, their biggest to date.
Front Row Seat Tracklist:
Act 1 – Exposition
1. While I’m Young
2. I’ve Been Known
3. Live It While You Got It
Act 2 – Incitation
4. Wasn’t That Drunk (w/ Carly Pearce)
5. Kiss You Good
6. If It Makes You Feel Good
Act 3 – Intimacy
7. Crazy Things
8. Front Row Seat
9. Kisses We Steal
Act 4 – Dissolution
11. Born To Break Your Heart
12. This Isn’t Easy
Act 5 – Dénouement
13. Intro – A Loss Of Memory