Michael Nau has recorded and released music under a few different names throughout his career, including his own. He came to my attention early on with the 2005 release of Hello, Dear Wind by Page France. A few years later, he would for Cotton Jones with Whitney McGraw Nau (though the Nau was not her surname at the time). Tall Hours in the Glowstream was their third album under the moniker, and like the others by Cotton Jones, it’s been long out of print.
But that’s not the case anymore!
For now, anyway. In the final weeks of 2021, Suicide Squeeze reissued Tall Hours in the Glowstreem on opaque peach swirl vinyl.
Let’s take a look inside.
Vinyl Unboxing of Tall Hours in the Glowstream (2021 Reissue)
I’ve started filming these “vinyl unboxing” videos, where I show the cover art, any inserts, and the wax. This works especially well with records like this, which come on some pretty sweet colored wax. Here’s the video:
Now let’s pivot to the music itself.
The Final Cotton Jones Record
Tall Hours in the Glowstream debuted back in 2010, and it was the final release the Nau duo gave us. That’s not to say they won’t ever give us more, but the likelihood is small. It follows an extremely limited pressing of 2008’s The River Strumming (just 300 copies exist, each with a different handmade cover) and it has yet to be reissued, and 2009’s Paranoid Cocoon.
It’s also important to note that Cotton Jones was at some point in 2008 or 2009 truncated to that from the Cotton Jones Basket Ride, so their first album uses that name.
Of the three, Tall Hours in the Glowstream is probably my least favorite, but I’m quite the fan so its presence in my collection is more than warranted.
I love the old-time folksy sound that is Nau’s signature with this project. It’s a sound that’s been forefront in my listening habits for the last several years, so that should be no surprise.
Here’s opening track “Sail of the Silver Morning:”
Where Page France always had a bit too much of a religious undertone for me (though I still thoroughly enjoyed their releases), Cotton Jones seemed to stray from that. The sound alone harkens of spirituality, as does a lot of dreamy indie folk, but one connected to nature and the inner self as opposed to a diety.
“Somehow Keep it Going” opens with with the following verse:
Where there’s a wind always blowing my mind“Somehow Keep it Going” by Cotton Jones
Red rolls the river
The taste of the morning still much sweeter than wine
Sun as true as ever
Take a listen:
It’s perhaps the most catchy and memorable song on the record.
What Cotton Jones song tops your list? For me, it’s “Sail of the Silver Morning” on this album, but my all time favorite would be “The Spinning Wheel” off The River Strumming.