“Clouding Up Your City” – The Damn Quails (2022) [english]

There are artists in independent American music who have stories that affect me almost as much as their music and, I must say, telling them becomes almost an automatic reaction. I love to introduce this side of American music to our distant latitudes. Far away in many things, especially in the way of living the music itself. The band, whose short story I’m about to tell you about, comes from Oklahoma and the part of the state around the city of Oklahoma City, the home of red dirt and country rock. In this area there are cities where bands become a cult, where crowding the locals to follow this or that artist is a must. Cities like Stillwater, Tulsa or Norman where The Deli is located. A legendary venue with a history of over 40 years of music. Two guys created a very important following around here, Byron White and Gabe Marshall, and founding a band later on was an almost inevitable consequence. That’s how the Damn Quails was born over twenty years ago, a band that played an important role in the explosion of a genre in Oklahoma that is still the most loved in that area and beyond. From a band with a twenty-year history you would expect many more albums and instead this that I will tell you about soon, is only the third of their discography. A discography started in 2011, after an incredible live activity, with “Down the Hatch“, an album that really made a success at the time and projected them in the Olympus of red dirt, an excellent album oscillating between country rock and folk. A work that made the base of their fans grow dramatically called “The Covey”. It was here that the unpredictable happened and they got involved in the implosion of the record label that had launched them. Years of red-hot legal disputes over the rights to the songs and even the name on which the Quails obviously claimed ownership. The band did not give in to these adverse events and began touring again for the locals, increasing the “Covey” exponentially. Thanks to crowdfunding organized by their followers, the Damn Quails managed to release their second album in 2015: “Out of the Birdcage“. Another round, another success. A really explosive record that asked for a very high bill. The members of the band, exhausted by a disproportionate number of concerts, were having serious family and health problems. They couldn’t handle that stress, and in 2016, they decided to stop everything. A truly shocking stop for the Covey, already waiting for the follow-up of the 2015 album. A break that lasted over 6 years and that led us to this 2022. Actually, White made a few appearances, there were concerts, but nothing to suggest a comeback. Instead, the meeting, or rather the new meeting, with the musician and producer John Calvin Abney, who had already played in their tours over the years, was decisive to find the sound and to go to the Cardinal Song Studio in Oklahoma City owned by Michael Trepagnier. The chemistry had not vanished and in just four days of takes, the Damn Quails return with the 11 pieces of this wonderful album, as if there had never been 6 years of absence. Press play and let yourself be carried away by the fun and sunny sound of Monsters, where the voice of White and the exceptional production really make the difference. On the album you will also find the wonderful voice of White’s sister, Kierston, also an artist who performs at the Deli and that of the fantastic Jamie Lin Wilson, one of the most appreciated red dirt singer. The tile track is pure country rock with that rhythm that only a red dirt artist can give to the pieces, the touch of the violin of Kevin “Haystack” Foster (also present in the record pedal steel) is a jewel for fine palates. Maybe one of the best pieces of the lot. In the ballad Mile By Mile, supported by keyboards, White’s voice gives a 10-praise performance and the accompanying choirs add depth to a truly successful piece. There is room for the wild groove of The Punxsutawney Rambler, country wrapped in the red soil of Oklahoma, but also for the delicate texican melancholy in the rhythmic Golden Sands of Leyte, which almost leads to a western ballad. Very evocative. Peace in the Valley (King of the Hill) is a ballad that still highlights Byron White’s folk storytelling talent, but also his stunning voice. A piece that is more folk rock than country, melancholy, intense and with a harmony that is chilling, enriched by the piano of the talented Abney and the choirs of White’s sister. Another big piece. The job closes with Good Times!? , an acoustic ballad that once again shows us what expressive power White’s voice has, I know I repeat, but really the singing of this artist fills the soul and heart, persuasive and not banal, while he tells us about the good old days when a loved one abandons us. Touching and intense. A really high level return from a band that we thought lost forever, a pleasant feeling of having found artists who still have a lot to give to American music and that live, I’m sure, will give these songs even more intensity. On the other hand, this, like almost all the bands in this part of the world, were born to be on stage and we hope that this time the stress of live and street life, will not affect their lives so negatively anymore. We need the Damn Quails talented bands to keep giving us pearls like this.

Good listening,

Trex Willer by http://www.ticinonotizie.it

(you can find original italian article at this link : https://www.ticinonotizie.it/the-damn-quails-clouding-up-your-city-2022-by-trex-roads/ )

Pubblicato da Trex

Sono un blogger e scrittore appassionato di musica indipendente americana. Scrivo gialli polizieschi e ho inventato il personaggio del detective texano Cody Myers.

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