A year after David Nail departed from his longtime label, Universal Music Group, the singer has returned with his first set of new music. Now the frontman of David Nail and the Well Ravens, the country singer embraces a broad spectrum of sounds that recalls Oasis, Ryan Adams and the Black Keys with rock-leaning production, atmospheric elements and thoughtful lyrics.
The first single off the group’s forthcoming project is the soaring “Heavy,” which highlights Nail’s familiar vocals alongside shimmering guitar parts and arena-ready percussion beats. In an interview with Rolling Stone Country, the singer says “Heavy” was the obvious choice as a first single.
“In thinking about how to introduce this new music, I thought, ‘If this is something that is different from anything I’ve ever done, should we go with the song that’s the most different? Should we go with the song that would have the biggest impact, and what would that impact even be?'” he explains. “When you listen to everything with a clear head trying to be objective as possible, I just felt like it was the one song that always seemed to sustain itself. Every time I heard it, I thought, ‘Maybe I underestimate how good that is.’”
Nail worked with Jason Hall and Andrew Petroff for his new project. Both musicians spent time on the road with him in the past, and he says he leaned on them to help figure out his next steps musically. Some of the tracks on Nail’s forthcoming release touch upon his battle with depression, but he says he often didn’t realize exactly what he was writing until he listened back to the mixes.
“It really wouldn’t be until that night when I would listen to the rough mixes of what we’d written that day that I would acknowledge, ‘OK, still haven’t buried that one yet’ or ‘Still gotta talk about that, I guess.'” he explains. “I think I’ve had this yearning to just say this. I want people to know that is something I’ve dealt with my entire life.”
The Most Anticipated Country Albums of 2018