Court Hoang’s Get Right hits like a revelation.
The Dallas-born and Fort Worth-based singer-songwriter’s sophomore album, which took nearly 15 years to realize, is an extraordinary piece of work, one built around the turmoil and toll of modern life, shot through with an unyielding sense of hope.
“The greatest feedback that I can ever get is that something I put out is resonating … on a deeper, human level,” Hoang said during a recent conversation. “That’s really why I make music, because that’s what I need. If it’s what I need, I have to believe it’s what other people need too.”
Hoang will celebrate the release of Get Right, due out June 17, with a concert on June 17 at the Margo Jones Theater in Fair Park, which will feature a 13-piece band. (KXT’s The Local Show had the premiere, last month, of Get Right’s lead single “The Basement.”) The release party, in keeping with Hoang’s specific artistic approach, will feature what he calls “these kinds of weird movement pieces” to accompany the songs.
“It’s got a kind of musical feel to it, in terms of the dynamics of the movements, but it’s still very kind of every day movements that are turned on their head a little bit,” Hoang said.
That tension between the abstract and the concrete threads through Get Right, produced by Joseph Fisher-Schramm, which, anchored by Hoang’s extraordinary, octave-leaping voice, revels in awe-inspiring grandeur and visceral emotion. “When you go it alone, it’s a lifetime,” he intones on the refrain of “Monster,” an early, explosive highlight. The thoughtfully sequenced record climaxes with “Lights Are Burning,” dense with strings, drums, ringing guitars and Hoang’s plaintive, piercing vocals.
It is, upon reflection and absorption, a document of reckoning with pain, whether of the external or internal variety.
“The pandemic really forced a lot of us inside in figurative as well as physical ways,” Hoang said. “I think that’s been on my mind a lot in terms of doing some of the soul-searching and just sitting and saying, you know, what are we doing as a society? How do we make this better? How do we give ourselves any kind of hope for anything getting better?”
All of that may make Get Right sound like more of a punishing slog than it is — there’s a sure-footedness and a clarity of vision to what Hoang and his collaborators achieve here that lifts the grim inspirations into the light.
The 12-track effort also sets a formidably high bar for Hoang to clear with his future releases, which, for his part, he said won’t take another decade to materialize. After his regional tour wraps in early July, Hoang, already at work on Get Right’s follow-up, will release a new single this fall with Jackie Venson.
Preston Jones is a North Texas freelance writer and regular contributor for KXT. Our work is made possible by our generous, music-loving members. If you like how we lift up local music, consider becoming a KXT sustaining member right here.