The Brag & Cuss marks a major turning point in Rocky Votolato's career. Unlike the minimal acoustic guitar and vocals of his breakthrough Makers, it's very much a band record. Featuring a group of exceptionally talented musicians - James McAllister (Sufjan Stevens), Bill Herzog (Jesse Sykes & the Sweet Hereafter), Casey Foubert (Pedro the Lion), and Rick Steff (Cat Power, Hank Williams, Jr..) - the album ventures at times into the classic country territory of lovers, drinkers, and the distant oasis of a truck stop on a stretch of dark highway. If Makers (which more than doubled the sales of Rocky's previous release and introduced him to a whole new audience) was his first giant step up, then the Brag & Cuss marks his arrival as a major force in American songwriting.
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