However heartwarming it may be, however raw, I can't say I've ever really found Americana fun; but then here's something different. A band that humorously defines itself as “Amerockanagrass”, fully aware that even that would not suffice. Fronted by Kina Lyn Muir and her softly powerful vocals, Portland's Twisted Whistle push the loose boundaries of American roots music a little further, retaining from the genre hardly much more than an instrumental formation and some themes here and there.
The particularity of the band's music, beautifully conveyed in this album, lies in the many flavours they successively incorporate to their songs: exploring elements of bluegrass, Irish folk, prog rock, and rock 'n' roll, they set themselves aside a deep-seated musical tradition to offer up something just a little more exciting. Fundamentally versatile, their forthcoming debut “Through The Mill”, presents a unique and ever so refreshing variety of acoustic sounds. Released on the 7th of July, it will be welcomed with a performance and a party at Mt Tabor Theatre.- Tracy Mamoun
While listening to AStranger at the Wheel, the first album released by Portland singer/songwriter Christopher Reyne, the composer's drive is apparent. The ten song album has an emotional, musical and stylistic range that is ambitious and satisfying. Kicking the album off with “The Notorious Kelly Monroe”, a catchy pop-esk hook and complex musical textures pair with Reyne's melodic voice to make it clear that this performer is dedicated to entertaining his listeners. Dedicated may be the perfect word to describe Reynes. The entire project has been in his hands, from the writing and performing to the recording and mixing. Literally every vocal track and instrument on the album you here is Reynes himself, save the drums that were added by a friend after all the songs were finished. As the album unfolds, the lyrics remain story-driven and vulnerable, the arrangements are thoughtful and interesting, and it is clear that Stranger at the Wheel captures what Christopher Reynes is: a driven entertainer and talented musician. - Joy Pearson