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Readers’ Pick: My Morning Jacket, “Circuital”

My Morning Jacket, Circuital

READERS PICK: MAY 2011 Twangville readers picked My Morning Jacket‘s Circuital as their favorite album of May 2011. If there’s anyone out there redefining classic rock it’s Jim James and My Morning Jacket. Circuital the band’s sixth LP takes me back to 70′s era Pink Floyd where sound was used to paint vivid pictures of […] more »

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Suzanna Choffel – Steady Eye Shaky Bow

Choffel Cover

As the old Monty Python line goes, “and now for something completely different.”  A few weeks ago I happened to catch Suzanna Choffel at Old Settlers Music Festival.  She was playing to an Austin crowd that knew her and my notes say something to the effect of “country meets jazz”.  Fast forward to last week […] more »

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Sarah Jarosz – Follow Me Down

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Covering the likes of Radiohead and Edgar Allen Poe in addition to her own superb songwriting, the single word to describe the latest effort from Sarah Jarosz would have to be “diversity”.  With a supporting cast of Americana and pop stars seemingly unavailable to any other musician under 70 years of age (Sarah was 19 […] more »

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MilkDrive – Road From Home

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Being able to pigeonhole a band’s sound is useful to a music reviewer.  It lets you describe them quickly before a blog reader clic….  But for those of you still with me, MilkDrive, and their latest album, Road From Home, spans not just 3-4 genres of music, but 3-4 eras of music. The first cut, […] more »

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Fleet Foxes – Helplessness Blues

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Let’s get this much out of the way: Everyone’s right about the new Fleet Foxes album, Helplessness Blues (Sub Pop). It’s astonishing. Sorry. It’s a safe bet that many out there were hoping the gentle, bearded, harmonizing folkies form the Northwest would fall flat on their nature loving faces. But, alas, they stand triumphantly, even […] more »

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Bobby Long – A Winter Tale

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English Folkster Bobby Long, the man with a name that (to me, at least) recalls more baseball and apple pie than London Bridge and Boddington’s, is back with an album that, at first blush, seems like a relatively stright-forward folk record, A Winter Tale. Sure, the album’s title has a certain Stratford-on-Avon feel to it, […] more »

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SXSW 2011: The Video Companion

Alejandro Escovedo - 10

I got a bit carried away with the videos, compiling 26 great videos captured live at SXSW. Not surprisingly, we kick things off with the performance that introduced me to Maxim Ludwig & the Santa Fe Seven. From there, a three-fer from Alejandro Escovedo’s special Sunday night gig at the legendary Continental Club. We’ve got […] more »

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SXSW 2011: The Sounds, Part 2

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Kasey Anderson & the Honkies Music is often about improvisation. In this case, however, it wasn’t the type of improvisation that one would expect. When the bass drum kept slipping across the cement floor, the band grabbed a keg to hold it in place. When that didn’t work, Anderson took a seat on the keg […] more »

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J. Mascis – Several Shades of Why

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The new album from J. Mascis, Several Shades of Why (Sub Pop), is a thoroughly predictable affair. But wait, that doesnt mean what you may think it does. It should be of little shock that Mascis’ laconic, and iconic, delivery is indeed tailor-made for an album comprised of primarily acoustic arrangements. But, given that Mascis […] more »

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Justin Townes Earle – Live At the Rio Theater

A couple of months ago, the collective conscience here at Twangville voted Justin Townes Earle’s latest record our album of the year.  On a chilly night in Santa Cruz, Earle stopped through on a west coast swing of appearances to play at the Rio Theater.  Dressed in a dark suit and skinny tie, with well […] more »

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Up & Comers – Honey Child

Honey Child may be currently unsigned, but that will not be the case for long. Their sound is definitely Indie Rock, but their music is mostly up tempo and very accessible. They mix the electric instruments of a Rock band with mandolin, banjo and acoustic guitars. The instrumentation produces an Alternative sound with Americana undertones. The songs have melodies and […] more »

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Kelly’s Top 20 for 2010!

OK, here’s the deal. 2010 was an interesting year for music, and in turn, my Top 20 list reflects that, I think. There are some of the albums that aren’t from your typical “Twangy” acts mixed in with bands that are absolute Twangville favorites. Some albums are higher up than you may see on other […] more »

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Sarah Jarosz – The New 45

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In the world of bluegrass and roots music, few, if any, have been buzzed about louder than Sarah Jarosz has been in the last couple of years. Unlike so many other hyped-up youngsters, however, the current musical student (it’s likely she could take many of her fellow pupils to school, if you know what I […] more »

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Amos Lee – Mission Bell

On January 25th, Amos Lee is going to release Mission Bell on Blue Note Records. Mark your calendars, this early January release will remain on many best of lists by the end of 2011. Characteristically, Lee’s soulful voice is the focal point of the album. However, the sound of Mission Bell exhibits more texture than his previous […] more »

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Meatyard – Sweet Old Green Life

Meatyard Cover

Somewhere in the information that I dug up on Meatyard, it says something about how “Leonard Cohen would sound if he had a country band”. There are all kinds of implications in that statement, like future greatness, cult following, and even that somehow nothing Cohen does is country. I don’t subscribe to much of that, […] more »

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Matthew Ryan benefit for John Anderson