‘Tugboats’ from The Brother Brothers - put these two together and magic happens

(February 13, 2017)

Listening to the EP ‘Tugboats’ from The Brother Brothers is an experience that could belong to today or come from many years ago. There’s an immediacy to their poignant and expressive songs, rich with portrayals, heavy with narratives and Tugboats_Album_Cover-01-2blessed with fine musicianship, equally there’s a seam folk heritage running deep throughout. The vocal blend that often comes with siblings is finely mirrored through the voices of identical twins Adam and David Moss (The Brother Brothers), but the sumptuous harmonies are not alone, the intermixing of fiddle, banjo, guitar and cello add something outstandingly dramatic to their supremely meaningful songs.

To place their music is almost a to step too far for definition, the elements of old time, bluegrass and folk mingle and express themselves through the brothers distinguishing style. The EP opens with the quietly thoughtful imagery of ‘Tugboats’ moves to the jaunty ‘Bird in a Tree’, through the mournful ‘Columbus Stockade Blues’ and the harmonic sorrow of ‘Come Back Darling’, the sprightly feel returns along with a vein of caustic humour with ‘Notary Public’ before closing with ‘Cairo’.

‘Tugboats’ makes clear what everybody knew throughout their disparate musical careers, put these two together and magic happens.


Review: Tom Franks

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