I don’t take too kindly to reader recommendations. You just never know who’s on the up and up and who is simply plugging a friend/client/bandmate. But in the case of Don Ross/Andy McKee (available here on CandyRat Records) and Mars Arizona I can’t possibly not post their stuff since they have been haunting my sleep (and email inbox) of late.
Everywhere I turn I see news about these bands. These are both folk-based releases, but they are wildly divergent. Don Ross’ and Andy McKee’s new record is acoustic fingerpicked duets sans vocals, while Mars Arizona is some sort of bluegrass and country mash-up by the duo of Paul Michael Knowles and Nicole Storto. I particularly like the old timey sound of “Dirty Town” and the way Nicole’s vocals seem to come out of an earlier age (I think it’s the reverb and decay that does that).
I haven’t come to any firm conclusion about either of these two bands; except that they’re ones to watch.
Don Ross and Andy McKee: