Today, rogue folk duo Adrian + Meredith share the music video for “Bad For Business,” the title track from the couple’s sophomore LP, due for release on August 20. The single and accompanying video, which was filmed using a traditional 19th century Crankie Theatre Box.
The anthem “Bad For Business” is a tongue-in-cheek display of how ironically polarizing it is to try and make the world a better place in the face of the current social landscape. “Sometimes it feels like we’re all shouting into a giant void and everything we do is ‘bad for business,’” explains Adrian Krygowski. “The rules change constantly – from not using plastic straws, to going vegan – it all ends in being criticized for doing it wrong.” Inspired by rising tensions and the tumultuous climate brought on by the last 4 years in national politics, the song is a veritable encapsulation of the modern American experience and sets the tone for the ensuing 11-track collection. The result is a blistering, candid exhibit of 20th century issues that fearlessly bumps up against the uncomfortable truths surrounding systematic racism, climate change, immigration and more.
Written at the boiling point of American upheaval in 2019, Bad For Business withstands the test of time and continues to parallel with present day affairs. The duo’s signature raucous presentation and gritty finish are a complement to the brash subject matter of the record and further propel them into the folk-punk canon. With such distinctive embellishments as Meredith’s percussive foot-stomping style and Adrian’s gravelly tenor, the forthcoming release demonstrates an outfit that has ripened to the apex of its sound and continues to build with the fuel of its surroundings.
Recorded in the living room of their mid century East Nashville house with friends like Paul Niehaus (Justin Townes Earle, Calexico), saxophonist Ken Francis Wenzel (Carlos Santana, Bobby Parker), and banjo player Fats Kaplan (Jack White), Bad For Business is a rowdy, rebellious and home-spun variety show. With eclectic influences ranging from the complex rhythmic nature of traditional Balkan arrangements, to rockabilly mainstays The Legendary Shack Shakers (whose bassist Mark Robinson produced and mixed the album), and the unadulterated spirit of rock n’ roll, the record is a fierce follow-up to the couple’s debut release. Bursting at the seams with jocular sing-alongs, bold compositions and even a cameo from the 1963 polka-pop hit “Who Stole the Kishka,” Bad For Business is a well-balanced offering for precarious times.
Meredith shares, “This record was our moment to remember why we started making art and music in the first place. We wanted good music, good lyrics, good people, and authenticity to be at the forefront of every track – a record you can actually escape into. A lot of the songs were inspired by our experience being American folk musicians touring internationally, and in the end we realized we are storytellers weaving vignettes about small town American life and then sharing those stories with the rest of the world. We feel a great sense of responsibility and privilege to be able to create connection and empathy through these songs. Creatively, we had a lot of fun making the record, and a large portion of it was recorded in our house in Nashville. So from our home to yours, releasing it feels like it will all come full circle.”