Premiere: Burt Hussell Shares New Singles “Home” and “High Desert”

Mar 14, 2023

By Caleb Campbell

Photography by Daven Martinez

Singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Burt Hussell has largely made his career behind the drum kit, backing a series of bands before he started writing his own music in the winter of 2019. During the pandemic, Hassell released his debut EP, House of Hussell, and picked up bass guitar after meeting longtime bassist Tim Lefebvre. After some time and training Lefebrvre and Hussell began writing together, crafting Hussell’s forthcoming debut LP, High Desert.

The record is largely centered around Hussell and Lefebvre’s bass, with the pair weaving a series of loop-based funk jams and psych rock odysseys, all shaded by Hussell’s comedic songwriting voice. Today, accompanying the news of the record, Hussell is sharing the album’s first two singles, “Home” and “High Desert,” premiering with Under the Radar.

“Home” acts as the record’s closing track, drawing the album to a close on a hypnotic and multi-phased effort. The track opens in a dreamy and celestial mode before moving between driving guitar passages, spacious psychedelic interludes, and a propulsive climax driven by knotted dance beats.

Speaking on “Home,” Hussell said, “This was the first song we recorded when we got into the studio. We were all very stoked and excited to get cookin’. This studio intern, Ayanna Riley, asked me if I was gonna be singing on this song. I wasn’t planning on it and she asked if she could. We set her up a mic, and she absolutely killed it. Took the song to a new level and actually gave the song some meaning. The lyrics in the song implore the listener, “Tell me where you wanna go.” I think that everyone that listens to the song will have their own place that they go, but for me, that place was home.”

In contrast, “High Desert” begins fittingly dusty and surreal, colored by droning synths, discordant keys, and a smokey bassline. As the song winds onward, that bassline takes on a different character, now surrounded by swirling strings and intricate drumming, giving the track a dramatic and cinematic feel. By its end, it feels like the soundtrack to a widescreen psych rock western.

Hussell explains, “Ever since I was a little kid, I wanted to go to the desert. Maybe it had something to do with my love of Star Wars. The closest thing to Tatooine. When Tim and I decided to record at Sonic Ranch, it seemed that I would finally get to fulfill that desire. When you listen to the song I hope you feel like I feel when you look up into the night sky in the high desert.”

Check out the songs below, along with the live performance video for “Home.” High Desert is out everywhere on June 16th.

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