13 Songs, 54 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

This clan of bearded, shaggy-haired hootenannies, armed with accordions, guitars, organs and fiddles, can raise a mighty din; a sound reminiscent of what the great and powerful Oz once said of the Tin Man: “a clinking, clanking, clattering collection of kaligenous junk!” Call it fun laced with doom, or a “take it home boys’” hillbilly fervor, leavened by much brooding bleakness and lyrical ruin. They open with the mini-rock-opera rising and falling of the moody “The Big Surprise,” before reverting to the harmonicas, fiddles, handclaps and barely controlled chaos of “Penn Station.” In the aptly titled “Run Chicken Run” the fray turns into full-tilt garage rock and in the other fowl salute, “Chicken Wire” they channel a Stones honk. Once over-compared to The Band, the three brothers and two friends (one named Christmas), are growing up fast, both as songwriters and performers. Led by singer Ian Felice, who swings between a reedy Dylanesque creak in “Boy from Lawrence County,” and a Waitsian sigh in “Sailor Song,” this raucous circus, which takes its name from a story by Mark Twain, sounds like old Huck Finn run gleefully amok.

EDITORS’ NOTES

This clan of bearded, shaggy-haired hootenannies, armed with accordions, guitars, organs and fiddles, can raise a mighty din; a sound reminiscent of what the great and powerful Oz once said of the Tin Man: “a clinking, clanking, clattering collection of kaligenous junk!” Call it fun laced with doom, or a “take it home boys’” hillbilly fervor, leavened by much brooding bleakness and lyrical ruin. They open with the mini-rock-opera rising and falling of the moody “The Big Surprise,” before reverting to the harmonicas, fiddles, handclaps and barely controlled chaos of “Penn Station.” In the aptly titled “Run Chicken Run” the fray turns into full-tilt garage rock and in the other fowl salute, “Chicken Wire” they channel a Stones honk. Once over-compared to The Band, the three brothers and two friends (one named Christmas), are growing up fast, both as songwriters and performers. Led by singer Ian Felice, who swings between a reedy Dylanesque creak in “Boy from Lawrence County,” and a Waitsian sigh in “Sailor Song,” this raucous circus, which takes its name from a story by Mark Twain, sounds like old Huck Finn run gleefully amok.

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