Daniel Young
Leave It Out to Dry

Release Date: 2 February 2024
Genre: Americana / Country / Folk

Daniel Young is a singer-songwriter, guitarist, drummer, sound engineer, and producer from Salt Lake City. He grew up on the side of a tall mountain, and that sense of forceful elevation informs all of his work. Young has been recording and performing for over two decades – and he’s not that old, which tells you much of what you need to know about his commitment to craft, about how deep this runs with him.

Who knows? On his soul-stretching, sometimes anguished fourth album, Leave It Out to Dry, Young finds his way to this question, over and over again. Through a heady stew of psych cowboy laments, Dead-style sideways rambles, and sagebrush pharmaceuticals, the album is Young’s rawest, most expansive adventure yet. The medium matches the message: Young is looking at the great beyond; Young’s music is becoming the great beyond. And, like the man said, sometimes when you stare into the abyss, it returns your gaze. Or sometimes, Young seems to acknowledge, you sing to it and it sounds back.

The familiar influences are still there – country & western, early-’70s rock & roll, observational songwriting á la John Prine – but they are filtered through something gnarlier, more unsettled. In other words, there’s an urgency and a ragged edge to many of the cuts here that feels like a breakthrough. “Here Comes the Flood,” for instance, finds Young at the edge of a new territory – sonically and spiritually – reaching outward, still reaching. Or the twin-guitar-lead, heavy-mic-bleed of “Help Us Get Along,” a horn-driven plea that charges toward solace.