No Fools, No Fun

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No Fools, No Fun
Studio album by Puss n Boots
Released July 15, 2014
Recorded Studio G, Brooklyn, New York
The Bell House, Brooklyn, New York[1]
Genre Country, rockabilly, jazz, blues, folk
Length 42:18[2]
Label Blue Note
Singles from No Fools, No Fun
  1. "Down by the River (Live from The Bell House, Brooklyn, NY / 2013)"
    Released: June 3, 2014[3]

No Fools, No Fun is the debut full-length album by Brooklyn-based alt-country trio Puss n Boots, released on July 15, 2014, through Blue Note Records. It is a collection of five original and seven cover songs originally performed by artists including Johnny Cash, Wilco and Neil Young.[1] The album, which contains both studio and live recordings, is available on CD, vinyl and as a digital download.[4] The album's title comes from lyrics in the Johnny Cash song, "Bull Rider", which is covered by the band on the album.[5]

Background and recording[edit]

About six months prior to the album's release the band decided to make a full-length album. The standard-edition release contains three live recordings, while a fourth is included as one of two bonus tracks on the Amazon deluxe edition. The live tracks were recorded live at The Bell House in Brooklyn, NY on June 27, 2013.[4] The studio tracks on the album were recorded in just three days at Studio G in Brooklyn.[6]

Release[edit]

Singles[edit]

The lead single from No Fools, No Fun, titled "Down By The River (Live From The Bell House, Brooklyn, NY / 2013)", was released on June 3, 2014.[3] The song is a cover written and originally performed by Neil Young.

Album[edit]

No Fools, No Fun was released on July 15, 2014, through Blue Note Records.[1] Amazon released an exclusive edition on CD and digital download that contains two bonus tracks.[4]

Promotion[edit]

In support of the album, Puss n Boots toured during the summer and fall of 2014. Along with clubs, the band performed at numerous festivals including the Clearwater Festival, Green River Festival and the Newport Folk Festival.[7][8]

On July 12, 2014, Puss n Boots was featured on SiriusXM's Outlaw Country channel, promoting the album and playing songs from it over an hour-long program.[9]

Prior to the album's release the band performed at The Wall Street Journal cafe and inside the "Soundcheck studio" at WNYC.[10]

On July 16, 2014, Puss n Boots performed "Don't Know What It Means" on The Tonight Show.[7]

On August 16, 2014, Puss n Boots appeared on the Saturday edition of the television show CBS This Morning.[10][11]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 66/100[12]
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3.5/5 stars[2]
American Songwriter 3/5 stars[13]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[14]
Paste 6/10[15]
34th Street Magazine B[16]
TODAY 4/5 stars[17]

No Fools, No Fun received mostly positive reviews from music critics upon its release. At Metacritic, they assign a "weighted average" rating out of 100 to selected independent ratings and reviews from mainstream critics, and the album has received an Metascore of a 66, based on 4 reviews, indicating "generally favorable" reviews.[12]

Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic rated the album three and a half stars out of five, calling it "an appealing listen," and that it is "never rowdy -- the closest it comes is the train-track beat of Jones' original "Don't Know What It Means"—but there's an earthiness to the trio's chemistry that signals how deeply the group knows each other's strengths and weaknesses."[2]

Rating the album three stars out of five, Hal Horowitz of American Songwriter states that its "difficult to dislike something that feels as genuine and unaffected as these dozen tracks played by talented friends clearly relishing each other’s company."[13]

Writing for Rolling Stone and rating the album three stars out of five, Will Hermes expressed, "Most bar bands don't manage trio harmonies near this gorgeous, but the song selection is uneven."[14]

Frederick Marfil of M Magazine called No Fools, No Fun "This summer’s all-purpose soundtrack ... (it) sounds as good at parties as it does in your headphones."[18]

Chart performance[edit]

No Fools, No Fun debuted at No. 83 on the Billboard 200 chart.[19] It also debuted at No. 7 on the Folk Albums chart and No. 28 on the Top Rock Albums chart.[20][21]

Chart (2014) Peak
position
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[22] 102
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[23] 51
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[24] 68
US Billboard 200[25] 83
US Folk Albums (Billboard)[26] 7
US Top Rock Albums (Billboard)[27] 28

Track listing[edit]

Standard edition[28]
No. Title Writer(s) Original artist Length
1. "Leaving London"   Tom Paxton Tom Paxton 3:10
2. "Bull Rider" (Live from the Bell House, Brooklyn, NY / 2013) Rodney Crowell Johnny Cash 3:39
3. "Twilight"   Robbie Robertson The Band 3:08
4. "Sex Degrees of Separation"   Sasha Dobson   3:17
5. "Don't Know What It Means"   Norah Jones   2:26
6. "Down by the River" (Live from the Bell House, Brooklyn, NY / 2013) Neil Young   5:29
7. "Tarnished Angel" (Live from the Bell House, Brooklyn, NY / 2013) Roger Miller George Jones 3:45
8. "Jesus, Etc."   Jeff Tweedy Wilco 4:11
9. "Always"   Catherine Popper   3:18
10. "GTO"   Jeb Loy Nichols Jeb Loy Nichols 4:10
11. "Pines"   Popper   2:38
12. "You'll Forget Me"   Dobson   3:03
Total length:
42:18
Amazon.com bonus tracks[4]
No. Title Writer(s) Original artist Length
13. "Cry, Cry, Cry"   Johnny Cash Johnny Cash 3:11
14. "In a Shanty in Old Shanty Town" (Live from the Bell House, Brooklyn, NY / 2013) Ira Schuster, Jack Little, Joe Young Ted Lewis and His Band 4:41
Total length:
50:10

Personnel[edit]

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format(s) Label
United States[4] July 15, 2014 Blue Note

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "PUSS N BOOTS ANNOUNCE DEBUT ALBUM "NO FOOLS, NO FUN" & TOUR DATES INCLUDING NEWPORT FOLK FESTIVAL". Blue Note Records. April 21, 2014. Retrieved June 10, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "No Fools, No Fun - Puss N Boots". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved July 13, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b "Down By The River (Live From The Bell House, Brooklyn, NY / 2013): Puss n Boots: MP3 Downloads". Amazon.com. Retrieved June 10, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "No Fools, No Fun: Puss n Boots: Music". Amazon.com. Retrieved June 10, 2014. 
  5. ^ Murray, Nick (June 27, 2014). "Watch Puss N Boots Cover Johnny Cash's 'Bull Rider' - Premiere". Rolling Stone. Retrieved July 2, 2014. 
  6. ^ Ives, Brian (July 14, 2014). "Interview: Norah Jones Glows Out of the Spotlight in Puss n Boots". Radio.com. Retrieved July 14, 2014. 
  7. ^ a b Frometa, RJ (June 3, 2014). "*PUSS n BOOTS TO APPEAR ON FALLON; EAST COAST TOUR DATES; WORLD CAFE; ACOUSTIC CAFE". VENTS Magazine. Retrieved June 11, 2014. 
  8. ^ "Puss n Boots on Facebook". Facebook. September 3, 2014. Retrieved September 4, 2014. 
  9. ^ Wehelie, Benazir (July 14, 2014). "Norah Jones, Catherine Popper & Sasha Dobson of Puss n Boots talk No Fools, No Fun and covering Wilco". SiriusXM. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  10. ^ a b "PUSS N BOOTS RELEASE DEBUT ALBUM "NO FOOLS, NO FUN"; APPEAR ON THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JIMMY FALLON". Blue Note Records. July 15, 2014. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Saturday Sessions: Puss n Boots sing "Don’t Know What It Means"". CBS This Morning. August 16, 2014. Retrieved August 17, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b Metacritic. "Critic Reviews for No Fools, No Fun". CBS Interactive. Retrieved July 16, 2014. 
  13. ^ a b Horowitz, Hal (July 14, 2014). "Puss n Boots- No Fools, No Fun - American Songwriter". American Songwriter. Retrieved July 14, 2014. 
  14. ^ a b Hermes, Will (July 15, 2014). "Puss n Boots 'No Fools, No Fun' Album Review". Rolling Stone. Wenner Media. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  15. ^ Luecking, Eric (July 16, 2014). "Puss N Boots- No Fools, No Fun Review". Paste. Retrieved July 16, 2014. 
  16. ^ Grace, Carolyn (July 17, 2014). "Review: "No Fools, No Fun"—Puss N Boots". 34th Street Magazine. Retrieved July 17, 2014. 
  17. ^ Mathews, Kevin (July 24, 2014). "No Fools, No Fun (Puss N Boots)". TODAY. Retrieved July 24, 2014. 
  18. ^ Marfil, Frederick (June 2, 2014). "M: The Must List — Culture, Fashion, and Beyond". M Magazine. Retrieved June 11, 2014. 
  19. ^ "The Billboard 200 Top Albums This Week (7/24/14)". Daily Postal. July 24, 2014. Retrieved July 28, 2014. 
  20. ^ "Folk Albums : Aug 02, 2014 - Billboard Chart Archive". Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved August 2, 2014. 
  21. ^ "No Fools, No Fun - Puss N Boots - Awards". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved August 9, 2014. 
  22. ^ "Puss N Boots – No Fools, No Fun" (in Dutch). Ultratop.be. Hung Medien.
  23. ^ "Puss N Boots – No Fools, No Fun" (in French). Ultratop.be. Hung Medien.
  24. ^ "Puss N Boots – No Fools, No Fun". Swisscharts.com. Hung Medien.
  25. ^ "Puss N Boots Album & Song Chart History" Billboard 200 for Puss N Boots. Prometheus Global Media.
  26. ^ "Puss N Boots Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Folk Albums for Puss N Boots. Prometheus Global Media.
  27. ^ "Puss N Boots Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Top Rock Albums for Puss N Boots. Prometheus Global Media.
  28. ^ "No Fools, No Fun by Puss N Boots". iTunes. Retrieved July 19, 2014. 
  29. ^ a b Credits adapted from album's back cover