The Great Despiser, the new album from celebrated singer-songwriter Joe Pug, will be released April 24 on Lightning Rod Records. This is the follow-up to Pug’s critically acclaimed full-length debut, Messenger (2010), and his wildly popular word-of-mouth EP, Nation of Heat (2008). Of the music, NPR Music praises, “Not only does Chicago-based singer have a beautifully mature voice, but the lyrics on Pug’s debut EP, Nation of Heat, possess wisdom seemingly beyond his age. Pair that with his powerful songwriting and it's nearly impossible to avoid drawing comparisons between Pug and folk legends like Bob Dylan or contemporaries like Josh Ritter.”
The 11-track album was recorded in Chicago with producer Brian Deck (Modest Mouse, Iron & Wine, Califone, etc). In addition to Pug, the album features various acclaimed musicians, including Sam Kassirer (Josh Ritter, Langhorne Slim) on piano, organ and marimba as well as backing vocals from The Hold Steady’s Craig Finn on the album’s title track.
Pug has toured nationally alongside Steve Earle, M. Ward and Josh Ritter and has appeared at Lollapalooza and the Newport Folk Festival. In celebration of the album, he will embark on a nationwide headlining tour this spring and summer including an appearance at SXSW.