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Category Archive for 'Folk'

“[C]onsciously evokes past Americana, stretching back beyond but anchored there, often incorporating a harder-rocking edge….Magpie and the Dandelion underscores how the appeal of the Avett Brothers remains in their indebtedness to the past without being bogged down by its legacy.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Lyrics hint at disquiet beneath the surface, but so much of The Civil Wars can be appreciated merely upon that surface, hearing Williams and White ease into their harmonies as they tastefully conjure spirits of the past to inhabit the present. Ultimately, the Civil Wars are impeccable craftsmen, taking weathered elements and repurposing them for [...]

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“Rush makes each song seem as dependable and solid as the earth itself, somehow mixing a wistful weariness in his voice with an underlying and unerring joyfulness, the same sort of thing he’s been doing for half a century now. That he’s still doing it as well as he ever has is a testament to [...]

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“Civil War: Songs of the North collects 15 Union-centric instrumental ballads like ‘Weeping Sad and Lonely/When This Cruel War Is Over,’ ‘When Johnny Comes Marching Home,’ and ‘The Battle Cry of Freedom,’ all of which are impeccably performed by Nashville-based multi-instrumentalist Craig Duncan and a small army of talented session musicians.” –All Music Guide Check [...]

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“Reflective and homespun, yet nimble enough to dabble in multiple genres (indie pop, Americana, psych-folk) without ever losing sight of its traditional singer/songwriter-oriented foundation… and is as inviting and unguarded as it is wily and unpredictable.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“Martin and Brickell are no accidental tourists. This is a sweet-sounding album with subtle depths, not really bluegrass, but a precisely gentle folk album that grows more graceful and revealing with each listen.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“The resulting Beast in Its Tracks, written in the wake of his divorce, treats the situation with anger, warmth, despair, humor, honesty, and most importantly, empathy for both of its subjects, something that many records of a similar disposition fail to achieve.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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The Lumineers: The Lumineers

“The Lumineers, a folk-rock trio out of Denver, Colorado, have a pretty interesting sound, an Americana mesh of folk, rock, and gospel that is similar in tone to the Waterboys, say, or an alt-folk version of Bob Dylan circa Desire, thanks in no small part to Neyla Pekarek’s inventive cello.” –All Music Guide Check Our [...]

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“There isn’t a note out of place anywhere, even though the band is adventurous and skews off in any direction imaginable within the arrangements of the songs. This is a wonderful album, full of great players playing like the best back-porch string ensemble one is likely to hear, and with Tornfelt’s vocals giving things a [...]

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“Woody Guthrie defined an era and culture in transition in his Dust Bowl ballads, his outlaw tales, his work and labor songs, antiwar songs, children’s songs, political songs, and a host of love songs and songs that touched on philosophy, geography, and the hard work of living day to day in an emerging industrial world… [...]

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“Dickinson isn’t showboating his considerable guitar skills here, but instead is offering a portrait of his heritage — and his compositional and arranging chops — inside a music that is every bit as haunted and mysterious as the north Mississippi hill country he calls home.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“It’s a remarkably wide range and it’s effortlessly eclectic, with the Dixie Chicks bringing it all together with their attitude and understated musicality — as debuts go (and this does count as a debut), they rarely get better than this.” –All Music Guide Check Our Catalog

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“For The Majestic Silver Strings, Miller recruited guitarists Bill Frisell, Marc Ribot, and Greg Leisz to join him on a program of classic country songs and a couple of originals. …The program is a revisioning of tunes from country’s canon that sound timeless against the original material. … The Majestic Silver Strings is one of [...]

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“[A]miable, quaint, mischievous, sad, and disarmingly sincere. …[A] relatively simple, country-folk record, albeit one with a college degree, and when it connects it hits that sweet spot between joy and despair that has served as the target for many a dusty brimmed singer/songwriter over the years. The Avett Brothers aren’t rewriting the book, they’re just [...]

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“On ‘Knock Knock Get Up,’ the Boston-based troupe…weaves bright tunes from border-crossing folk threads. DWM doesn’t deliver straight Mexican or American traditions, instead steeping contemporary writing and performance styles in those influences for a fresh hybrid. The lyrics have matured, now as captivating as the sounds around the words. …DWM has leapt up the ranks [...]

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Beth Orton: Sugaring Season

“[T]he album unleashes a kind of churning, rumbling urgency in which intensity stands in for speed. Ornate but not wispy, these songs aren’t merely pretty; they also convey power that builds subtly. Sugaring Season waits until its closer, ‘Mystery,’ to really dial back to something entirely gentle and spare. When that song finally rolls around, [...]

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Kathy Mattea: Calling Me Home

“When Kathy Mattea made a hard roots turn on 2008′s Coal, a heartfelt examination in classic mining songs of the hard, often dangerous life of coal miners, it sounded like she’d been singing them all her life. On Calling Me Home, Mattea delivers a second album of material that has its origins in coal country [...]

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“[H]e has written sturdy, intelligent songs for over some 40 years now, and if it’s his biggest one, ‘American Pie,’ that gives him the title American Troubadour, well, the title still fits. …The CD set features several live tracks, including those of ‘American Pie’ and ‘Vincent,’… it does span McLean’s entire career and does a [...]

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