Archive for January, 2011

Kill County – “The Year Of Getting By”

Monday, January 31st, 2011

I was starting to feel a little guilty for not posting today. So here’s a little something in celebration of the upcoming SXSW music festival. Kill County is an Oklahoma based band with an affinity for sad sack americana-inflected alt-country. In layman’s terms they’re a little bit country, a little bit rock, and a little bit folk. Their sound has a minimalist feel with lots of space between and among the instruments.

I like “Down To Texas” from their 2010 release The Year Of Getting By, mainly because I’m confirmed for SXSW and from here on out til March 17 I’m all Texas all of the time.

Down To Texas [Download]

Honky-tonk Friday – Buffalo Gospel’s “Abigail” (with guest vocalist Heidi Spencer)

Friday, January 28th, 2011

The Milwaukee based band Buffalo Gospel are releasing their new album The Good Land as a free download. Here’s their rationale from their website:

After a little deliberation, we’ve decided to offer the new album, ‘The Good Land,’ for free. We’ve included a secure donation link again and would obviously love any help we could get to offset the high cost of recording. The goal at the beginning of this experiment was to write and record music we truly enjoy, make it fun, and get it to the public. We all feel that this is the best way to do it. Feel free to contribute as much or as little as you want. EVERY little bit helps and is tremendously appreciated.

Normally that wouldn’t sway me one way or the other. But you can truly hear in their music that the band had fun recording and playing it. It’s not a rawkus fun though; it’s a loose, mid-tempo alt-country kind of fun. Acoustic ballads clearly outnumber rockers. But it’s the song “Abigail” that I link to today with its deathly Appalachian flavored lyrics, delicate mandolin, stand up bass, and some beautiful female vocals courtesy of friend Heidi Spencer.

Abigail [Download]

Don Auber – “Big Fish” (riyl Malcolm Holcombe, William Elliott Whitmore, Ben Weaver)

Thursday, January 27th, 2011

It’s difficult to decide what music to post some days. Take today for example. I had a bunch of stuff I was considering but none of it grabbed me, plus someone else had either already gotten to it or surely would soon. Songs:Illinois has always been a place for the little known, backwoods, shy and humble hermit-artists of the world. So keeping with recent history I’m going to shed a light on a performer from Athens who deserves a little limelight.

Don Auber has just released a 5 song ep of such intellect, heft, and wordplay that it’s fairly astounding especially from such a young man. These songs (like those of Malcolm Holcomb, William Elliot Whitmore and Ben Weaver) seem to come from another dimension, delivered to the artist sealed with wax, blood, and strife. Instead you can be assured that each word was labored on and spun into the final result. And the result is a southern gothic mini masterpiece.

The 5 song ep Big Fish is available here as a free download.

The Coffin Builders [Download]

Odell’s Down Cards [Download]

Twilight Hotel – “Ham Radio Blues” (with references to Art Bell and Coast to Coast)

Monday, January 24th, 2011

And now on to the the criminally under-appreciated band Twilight Hotel. All my favorite blogs have written about them over the years including MOKB, Hero Hill, Nine Bullets and the Late Greats. The band released their new record on Jan 18. On it they have a song that references Art Bell and the late night radio show Coast To Coast called “Ham Radio Blues”. The band is essentially the Canadian couple Brandy Zdan and Dave Quanbury now relocated to Austin. I think of them as a kind of scuzzy Cowboy Junkies if that’s any help.

Here’s “Ham Radio Blues” off the new record When The Wolves Go Blind.

Ham Radio Blues [Download]

Video for “When The Wolves Go Blind”

Xtranormal Wrestling Movie

Friday, January 21st, 2011

My son and I made this xtranormal video about his wrestling team. It’s pretty funny. He badgered me to put it on my blogs so we’ll get more hits. So here goes:

New record from Hayes Carll – “KMAG YOYO (& other American stories)”

Thursday, January 20th, 2011

Hayes Carll is in my top ten list of all time great singer songwriters. He’s young yet and his discography is incomplete and a little scattered. But the guy can write a song; whether it’s his Christmas tome “Grateful For Christmas This Year”, or something funny like “She Left Me For Jesus” or his Townes Van Zandt inspired “Drunken Poet’s Dream” these songs connect on a level that is difficult to explain.

His new record is out in February and is titled incongruously KMAG YOYO. He explains the title below in the EPK for the new record, as well as delving into the origins of this record and his life off and on the road.

Pre-order here via Amazon or there are a bunch of pre-order packages up on Hayes’ site.

“Another Like You” from KMAG YOYO

“Hard Out Here” from KMAG YOYO

“I’m Grateful For Christmas This Year” from KMAG YOYO

Update & new music by Carrie Rodriquez, David Wax Museum, and Hezekiah Jones

Tuesday, January 18th, 2011

Hey there,

I’ve got a couple of quick updates on artists I’ve written about in the past.


First up is a collaboration between Carrie Rodriguez and the man behind the band Romantica. Carrie often sings with a male vocalist. For years she and Chip Taylor recorded and played together. As a result she’s a natural with harmony vocals. Here’s a song off the new record We Still Love Our Country:

Your Lonely Heart [Download]


Next up is a song from the Boston based band David Wax Museum. The are really creating a stir with their upbeat take on folk music. They seem to appeal to both the acoustic music crowd and the dance crowd. They remind me just a little bit of Poi Dog Pondering in that way. The band is releasing a new album in February called Everything Is Saved. Here’s a song off it. The band plays S.P.A.C.E. in Evanston on Feb. 25.

Born With a Broken Heart [Download]


Finally there is a new record coming out on Yer Bird by Hezekiah Jones. I have written about their music in the past but never really became a dyed in the wool fan. The new record, Have You Seen Our New Fort?, is sounding good and I might be a convert yet. “Mind Malaise” with its quirky instrumentation, cabaret punk style, and infectious lyrics is lots of fun. Lots more info here.

Mind Malaise [Download]

YouTube Record Label Tribute – Homestead Records (Big Dipper, Breaking Circus, Great Plains, Salem 66, The Frogs, Happy Flowers)

Monday, January 17th, 2011

Big Dipper – “Faith Healer”

Breaking Circus – Shockhammer Thirteen”

Great Plains – “Letter To A Fanzine”

Salem 66

The Frogs- “I’ve Got Drugs”

Happy Flowers – “Mom I Gave The Cat Some Acid”

Honky-Tonk Friday – Davy Jay Sparrow & His Well-Known Famous Drovers

Friday, January 14th, 2011

It’s been a while since we’ve done a Honky Tonk Friday feature. I miss em, how bout you? Here’s the title track from the the new album by Davy Jay Sparrow plus some stellar back catalog. Davy Jay is from Bloomington, which as you know is a real hot spot for old fashioned honky-tonk. Somehow he made his way playing every two bit country bar and state fair in Bloomington. Now he’s top of the heap and his “well known famous drovers” are poised to reap the rewards.

You can buy the new record here via CD Baby.

The Bottom of the Barrel [Download]

Bonus song

Fire In Her Belly [Download]

Back catalog

Drivin’ Nails In My Coffin [Download]

Ramblin Man [Download]

Steel Guitar Rag [Download]

Roll Over, Mama [Download]

And now for something completely different: White Fang – “Party Band”

Thursday, January 13th, 2011

Just for fun. And because I can post any damn thing I want on here. Here’s the new song from Portland’s White Fang. It’s 2 minutes of sludgy garage punk from a band that just doesn’t really give a shit. It’s on a 3 song 7″ due out in February.

Order the new 7″ from Marriage Records here.

Party Band [Download]


Dream On [Download]

Back catalog

Space Gemz [Download]

Duh [Download]

Tall Shadow [Download]

Burgerville #3 White Fang

New music from Southeast Engine (Misra, March 29) and David Myles (New Scotland Records, Jan. 25)

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011

I just got two pr emails that normally I would just skim and delete. But one comes from the rep for the band Southeast Engine while the other comes from Joel Plaskett and his 7″ vinyl label New Scotland Records.

In the case of Southeast Engine, this year I fell in love with a Christmas song from founder Adam Remnant and now I am am very receptive to his work with this band. In the second instance, I feel that Joel Plaskett is one of the great undersung singers/writers of our generation so anything he is involved with I am open to.

The Southeast Engine record is on the retooled Misra Records. It’s a concept album about one family’s trial and tribulations during the Great Depression in the Appalachian mountains region of the US. The music is haunting and definitely is fitting for a record that purportedly takes place almost a hundred years ago. Of course the lyrical themes are all very relevant considering the state our nation and its’ people are in.

The record is called Canary. It comes out March 29.

Ruthie (Removed by label/band request)


Christmas Song [Download]


David Myles’ song “Out Of Love” is a simpler affair. That is if you consider writing a great love song simple. Find out more info on this three song 7″ slab of vinyl over at the New Scotland Records website.

Out of Love [Download]

Magnolia Mountain – “Redbird Green”

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

It took a little hunting to find something I wanted to post today. Magnolia Mountain has a modern bent on bluegrass inspired music. They are not strict adherents to the bluegrass rulebook. Electric instruments are added to the more traditional banjo/mandolin/fiddle lineup. At other times the band rocks out (in a kind of `50′s way) – see the video below for “Hellbound Train”.

You can buy the band’s 2010 release Redbird Green here (including the 2 LP gatefold sleeve set).

Gone [Download]


Ma Belle Marie [Download]

Video for “Hellbound Train”

The Bear – “On the Shoals”

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

The Bear is a band out of Shoals, Alabama. I don’t know how I stumbled on them (although I think I originally clicked because of the artwork on their new album) but I’m glad I did. The band succeeds in part because of the other worldly vocals of Amber Murray. Combine that with a strange mix of old-timey instruments and a modern sensibility and you wind up with a pretty satisfactory outing on this their self-titled debut record.

The band has a January 14 record release party at Billy Reid in Florence, Al. More info here or to purchase The Bear here.

On The Shoals [Download]

New music from Signe Tolefsen

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

Well, that was quite a break. It’s been almost 2 solid weeks without a post, I haven’t checked Twitter or Facebook or or Hype Machine in all that time. I’m back for now, but much of the music I’ve heard that is scheduled to be released in 2011 has left me high and dry. One artist that is an exception is Signe Tolefsen. I wrote about her debut record back in 2009 (also You Crazy Dreamers posted once on Signe as did Let Me Like It here).

Signe Tollefsen is an American of Dutch descent living in Amsterdam. Her music has the world weary feel of American folk and blues with a bit of cosmopolitan Europe mixed in. Her new record is an EP called Baggage. I like “Down By The Water”, its imagery of a child drowning in the water reminds me of the Violent Femmes’ “Country Death Song”.

Down By the Water [Download]


Hooked (You Spit In My Whiskey) [Download]