Valerie June refers to “a light you have inside you” on her celestial new song “Astral Plane.”
A belief in auras isn’t necessary to recognize that the remarkable singer/songwriter from Tennessee is positively aglow.
Anyone who has encountered June’s 2013 breakout album “Pushin’ Against a Stone” or has seen her perform her distinctive brand of Appalachian soul knows that the singular singer/songwriter is impelled by a powerful spiritual force.
Beneath a magnificent crown of hair that makes her the Medusa of the Americana music scene and with the thick drawl and engaging personality that bear resemblance to a rebooted version of Dolly Parton, June conveys spiritual yearnings with the heart of poet. As with masters like Bob Dylan, Curtis Mayfield and Van Morrison, June’s transcendent music grasps for otherworldly truths.
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While “Pushin’ Against a Stone” garnered spots on many year-end lists in 2013, the forthcoming “The Order of Time” album promises to expand her reach. The hypnotic boogie of “Shakedown” is among the new compositions that will impel fans of Alabama Shakes to make beelines for the dance floor.
June seems entirely indifferent to trends in popular music, but her tourmates Oh Pep! are in tune with contemporary indie-rock and up-to-the-minute pop. The Australian duo of Olivia Hally and Pepita Emmerichs traffic in the sort of esoteric art-pop associated with Solange.
8:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25. Knuckleheads. 816-483-1456. knuckleheadskc.com. $17.50 in advance.
Concert previews by Bill Brownlee, Special to Ink