Get as hot and bothered as you want about the newest names hitting the independent country scene, but those who know their stuff know that Leroy Virgil and Hellbound Glory are the some of the original country insurgents of the modern era who helped turn country music upside down, and open the doors for many of today’s heavy hitters.
There’s a reason 2010’s Old Highs and New Lows was considered the #4 Album of the Decade around these parts, and it’s not because of Leroy’s good looks and charm. It’s that he can write most anyone under the table, and we’re not talking nursery rhymes. A purveyor of what he’s referred to as “Scumbag Country” over the years, it’s stories from the seedy underbelly of life, but ones that aren’t light on the wordplay and wisdom.
Now Hellbound Glory is getting ready to release a new album called Pure Scum on June 5th, 2020. Produced by Shooter Jennings and recorded in L.A.’s Echo Park neighborhood, it features eight new songs from Leroy with a couple or rearrangements of traditionals, and wrecking crew of studio musicians that includes many principles from the Shooter camp, including steel and lead guitar player John Schreffler, Ted Russell Kamp on bass, and Aubrey Richmond on fiddle.
“This album is the most classic country album Hellbound Glory has ever made. It’s also the scummiest,” Leroy Virgil tells Saving Country Music. “We recorded it live in two days. All the vocals are live takes.”
The Reno native clearly is calling upon some hometown inspiration in this record with track titles like “Loose Slots,” “Neon Leon,” and “Renowhere.”
Ahead of the new release, they have released a new song called “Damned Angel” that features a bit of a surf feel, with Leroy playing the lead guitar line (listen below).
Pure Scum Track List:
1. “Ragged But Alright”
2. “Wild Orchid”
3. “Someone To Use”
4. “Loose Slots”
5. “Dial 911”
6. “Neon Leon”
8. “Damned Angel”
9. “Hank Williams Lifestyle”