10 Best Avett Brothers Songs
The Avett Brothers have been keeping the sound of Americana alive since 2000 with the release of their first EP. The Concord, N.C. band fuses bluegrass, indie folk, grunge and other genres into highly enjoyable songs that have been captivating fans for over a decade. The Avett Brothers have refined their sound over the years, which was especially evident on their major label release, 'I and Love and You.' With a new album coming out this fall, help us celebrate their success by checking out our 10 Best Avett Brothers Songs list.
After releasing a couple of records, the Avett Brothers spent some time in the studio -- 70 hours to be exact -- to work on their first full-length for local record label Ramseur Records. The result was 'A Carolina Jubilee,' a 15-track offering whose imperfections were more of a strength than weakness. 'Love Like the Movies' stands out with its very relatable lyrics. "Now in the movies they make it look so perfect / And in the background they're always playin' the right song / And in the ending there's always a resolution / But real life is more than just two hours long," sings Seth Avett. 'Love Like the Movies' comes in at No. 10 on our 10 Best Avett Brothers Songs list.
We all have regrets, but few of us can express those regrets in a catchy folk song. The Avett Brothers song 'Shame' shows how they can recognize their own mistakes about ending a relationship prematurely while strumming a banjo and acoustic guitar. "OK, so I was wrong about / My reasons for us fallin’ out / Of love I want to fall back in" are the opening lyrics to 'Shame.' We've all been there.
Coming in at No. 8 on our list of the best Avett Brothers songs is a track from their first full-length album, 'Country Was.' As with many Avett Brothers songs, 'My Losing Bet' is about lost love. The piece displayed early on how well the group could combine bluegrass, folk and roots rock and create their own unique sound. The Avett Brothers harmonize well together, and the piano and strings convey the extreme sadness of 'My Losing Bet.' It makes you feel like you're in a small-town bar drinking whiskey by yourself, pining over the one that got away.
After impressing legendary producer Rick Rubin with their 2007 album, 'Emotionalism,' the Avett Brothers found themselves signed to his American Recordings label. Expectations were high for the band's major label debut, and 'I and Love and You' delivered. The title track is a shining example of how polished the album is, incorporating more piano and textures onto the Avett Brothers' bluegrass foundation. 'I and Love and You' and its story of leaving the life you know behind and starting out fresh eased fans' worries about their major label jump.
Leave it to the Avett Brothers to name an album after an English yacht tied to cannibalism on the sea. Their 2004 disc 'Mignonette' was a continuation of the Avett Brothers' last release, 'A Carolina Jubilee,' and revealed to listeners the progress the group was making on honing their sound. Like the rest of the record, 'The Day That Marvin Gaye Died' deals with the theme of truth. The song is also a rare showing of bassist Bob Crawford on lead vocals.
With a title like 'Die Die Die,' you would expect this to be a wicked death metal number. Instead, it's a passionate Avett Brothers song about dying alone. It seems the band has a little too much fun saying the song title over and over again. "But nobody knows what lies behind / The days before the day we die / Die, die, die, die, die, die, die / Die, die, die, die, die, die, die / Die, die, die," they sing. The track, one of our favorite Avett Brothers songs, also features a surf rock-like guitar solo and Seth Avett showing off his vocal range.
You know that annoying feeling you get when you start to realize you're falling for someone, and the feeling won't give away? The Avett Brothers describe that situation on 'Kind of in Love' from their very first release, 'The Avett Bros.' EP. 'She's good as a mystery / A salesman for misery / And I am bankrupt / In debt to my knees": These are some of the most honest lyrics ever written. Everything about 'Kind of in Love' meshes well, from the vocals to the simple strums of the guitar and banjo, and that's the reason it comes in at No. 4 on our 10 Best Avett Brothers Songs list.
One of the most painful experiences in the world is being in love with someone who's already in a committed relationship. You know you could treat that person like royalty, and wonder if the one he/she is with does the same. Is the object of your affection happy with who they're with? The Avett Brothers ask those questions and more in 'Do You Love Him,' off their 'A Carolina Jubilee' record. "I do love you, I do feel you, each day and night / But I can't tell right from wrong, or fear from insight / But you always knew everything and that is what is clear / Do you love him? Do you love him? Do you love him, my dear?" the Avett Brothers ask, fearing what the answer might be.
The Avett Brothers kept the tradition of 'Pretty Girls' song titles going on 'Emotionalism.' 'Pretty Girl From San Diego' starts off with jagged ukulele strings, and combines with banjos, guitars and crashing water waves to round out the recording. The band's somehow able to make it work without sounding like a complete audio mess. 'Pretty Girl From San Diego' sounds like a song Jack Johnson would do if he dove headfirst into folk music, and finds itself at No. 2 on our list of the best Avett Brothers songs.
Older Avett Brothers fans might feel the group's 'I and Love and You' Rick Rubin-produced album sounds a little too polished, but expanding their audio offerings has only helped them evolve. This song is a melodic treat that showcases how far the Avett Brothers have come since their 2000 debut. The expanding piano keys, drums and cello add a more dramatic quality to the song but never get overbearing. The band managed to refine their unique sound and give it a more mainstream shine without compromising integrity. Achieving that balance is the reason why this track is our No. 1 Avett Brothers song.