Prior to 2005, it had been nearly a decade since Liz Durrett had completed her last album. That work, which was shelved by Durrett for nine years as she took a self imposed musical exile, eventually saw the light of day in early 2005 when it was released on Athens, GA Warm Electronic Recordings. Originally recorded as a demo in an effort to obtain a record deal, the collection of songs entitled ‘Husk’ proved to be strong enough in its own right and quickly obtained widespread critical acclaim for it’s ‘stark loveliness’ (Washington Post) and it’s ‘threadbare sonic tapestry’ (Splendid Magazine) as well as drawing complimentary comparisons to the works of Gillian Welch and Hope Sandoval (Mazzy Star).


No doubt, Durrett’s upbringing had an intense effect on her interest in music. Growing up in the sleepy southern town of Rome, GA, she’s quick to credit much of her musical inspiration to the lifeline that her legendary uncle, Vic Chesnutt, threw her in the midst of a turbulent youth. It was Chesnutt, she says, who gave her a guitar at 16 and jokingly told her to “write mean songs about your parents”. Chesnutt’s intuition was dead on, as soon after, not only was Durrett writing her own material, Chesnutt was also employing her to perform on his tours and several of his own recordings, from his 1992 epic album, ‘West of Rome’ to his most recent release, “Ghetto Bells”.


In 2006, Liz Durrett’s second album, “The Mezzanine” was released by Warm Electronic Recordings. In contrast to her previous work, “The Mezzanine” is a surprisingly hi-fi affair. Gone are the hissing ghosts and unsure echoes that once haunted and obscured her recordings. And while producer and occasional performer Vic Chesnutt still adds his trademark, artfully ramshackle recording techniques and veteran engineer Andy Baker (Macha, Japancakes, Glands) attends to the more traditional sonic details, they wisely let Durrett steer the album this time around.

It’s her voice and guitar that are the focus here. And that’s important, because Durrett performs with more energy, determination and flat out rawness than she ever has before. From the curiously up-tempo “Cup On The Counter” to the visceral lament of “Marlene”, Durrett covers a lot of ground within the album’s eleven songs.


In 2008, Liz Durrett released "Outside Our Gates". Produced and arranged by indie rock icon, Eric Bachmann (Archers of Loaf, Crooked Fingers, Azure Ray), "Outside Our Gates", represents a sonic leap forward for Durrett. With Bachmann on board, Durrett’s once spare, acoustic downbeats have been supplanted by a more textured and diverse orchestra of sounds. A virtual cacophony of instruments are here, including (but not limited to) tiny nylon-string guitars, backwards electric feedback loops, pizzicato violins, pluckycellos, upright bass, wurlitzers, accordions, grand space pianos and marching drums. Bachmann’s score somehow harmonizes these elements seamlessly to provide the perfect setting for Durrett’s near dream-state writings and softly unsettling voice. Additional performances include those by Vic Chesnutt, Brian Causey (Man or Astro-man?), Amanda Kapousouz (Tin Cup Phrophette), Eric Harris (Olivia tremor Control) and members of Ham1.