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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Carry Illinois

Siren

Review by Gary Hill

Those who follow Music Street Journal regularly will probably know that I’ve got a soft-spot for music that combines seemingly disparate musical styles into something fresh and new. This EP is just such an item. In this case, the music merges roots music like folk, bluegrass and traditional blues with modern alternative rock, shoegaze and dream pop. The effect is stunning. This is compelling and powerful music and my only complaint is that I wish there was more here. This is likely to land in my best of 2014 list.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Weakest Limb
Roots music and alternative rock seem to collide here. This is hard rocking, and slow moving. There’s a nearly acapella section later in the track. This is great stuff that has psychedelia, folk and much more in the mix.
Siren

The title track comes in with an almost electronic music vibe. It grows upward from there in a real psychedelic way. The vocals come in bring an old-time roots blues sound. As it moves forward it gets some dreamy musical elements in the mix. Electronic music and bluegrass seem to merge further down this musical road.
Jackson Sq.
This comes in with more pure bluegrass and folk music as the driving force. The first verse is delivered in that nearly pure roots sound. Then distorted guitar comes over the top bringing the rock elements.
Nothing to Despise
Dreamy and yet noisy, this cut combines folk music with shoegaze in great ways. It rocks out at times and is mellower at others.
A Good Farewell
This is the most pure bluegrass and folk song of the bunch. It’s still got a bit of a modern edge, mostly in terms of the vocals and general sound, though. It’s a great way to end things in style.


 
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