Video Roundup

Good morning, Dig Nation. After a little vacation, I am back and ready to blog again. Thanks to Dave for keeping TWD going strong (and have you heard he's moving to Portland? Help him make a playlist here). This morning, I have some videos of great songs we've shared in the past.


The Handsome Family: Wilderness

For nine albums and over two decades Brett and Rennie Sparks of The Handsome Family have been releasing music that has garnered lofty praise from critics and audiences alike. For instance, Mojo called their 1998 album Through the Trees one of the “ten essential Americana records of all time,” and Uncut declared In the Air “one of the most important records of the 21st century.” While originally from Chicago, the duo now records all of their material in a converted garage studio in their Albuquerque home where their song writing process is that Rennie composes the lyrics while Brett Sparks sets the music and gives voice to his wife's words.

Their newest album, Wilderness, was released May 14th of this year and is a twelve track concept album about wildlife animals, their potential to be destructive, and as such, the parallel capacity of humans.  Read on for my complete thoughts, to hear more from the album, and to sneak as peak of the official video for their song Woodpecker. You dig?


Collaborative Playlist: Baltimore to Portland Edition

The big news at Dig HQ in Baltimore is that I am all packed up and ready to relocated to Portland Oregon at the start of July. I moved to Baltimore in 2004 to attend college, then I stayed for more college, and after 9 years I found that I had adopted a pretty great dog, worked 4 years in the public school system, performed for 2 years alongside the Atlantic Guitar Quartet, and started a pretty badass music blog which I'm proud to say is also repped by Steve in NYC. With his help we have written over 1,000 articles, hosted a multitude of shows, and brought you consistent content from across the musical board. I believe Those Who Dig has a unique diversity of musical taste and I have been proud of our work since its inception back in 2010.

Here's where you come in. I am asking the Dig Nation to help me compile a playlist long enough to serve as my mixtape across America. I'll be driving zig-zag up and down and across this great big nation Dean Moriarty style for about two weeks and I want to know what songs are your favorite for a road trip like this. They can be related to a specific area of the country or just generally sweet tunes to drive to – your choice. Also if you've got a story associated with the song I'd love to hear it and share it with the readers as this playlist comes together. You can send me your submissions via our comment box below, TWD's Facebook page, or either the TWD Twitter account or me personally at DaveWhoDigs

Read on for the full article regarding this collaborative playlist project. You dig?


The Melodic: On My Way EP

The Melodic is a new four piece band out of the UK that will release their debut EP On My Way on June 25th. They are signed to Anti Records and the members are: Huw Williams, Rudi Schmidt, John Naldrett, and Lydia Samuels. On My Way is ripe with warm harmonies, infectious melodies, and tasty instrumentation that does not shy away from lesser used instruments such as the charango, the melodica and the kora. As a side note, I've always had a soft spot in my heart for the melodica, the timbre of that instrument is always and will always be associated with good times. In fact, I dare you to compose a funeral dirge for melodica, it won't work, everyone will just end up smiling. 

Regardless, On My Way from The Melodic is set to work its way into both your regular rotation and your summer mix tapes. This is a do not miss EP for the summer of 2013. Give the title track a listen below and then get the full release on June 25th to enjoy the remaining songs. You can also stay in touch with the band via their Website, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You dig?


Red Tail Ring – The Heart's Swift Foot

The Heart's Swift Foot is the newest release from Kalamazoo based folk duo Red Tail Ring. The responsible parties are Michael Beauchamp and Laurel Premo and their twelve track opus is as ripe with instrumental technique and musicianship as it is with folk authenticity and engaging story telling. You might ask, "How does one get all steeped folk authenticity?" Well, degrees in Ethnomusicology, English Literature, and time abroad studying Finnish traditional music at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki would be a pretty good start.

Regardless, the only thing about this record that sounds academic is the duo's attention to instrumental and vocal intonation. The rest just sounds like satisfying Americana through the lens of a contemporary mid-western duo. Enjoy the bookend tracks from this album below and then make friends with the duo via their Facebook page, Official Web Page, and find all of their music on Itunes.

Red Tail Ring: Ohio Turnpike

Red Tail Ring: My Heart's Own Love