The Armadillos Self Titles

Folk is big these days. At least it was there for a bit. Between the Avett Brothers and Mumford and Sons, it seemed the world was ready to step away from the auto-tuning and enjoy music that’s more than 65% real. I hope that’s still going on. I don’t follow the world closely enough to know anymore.

If folk is big, then the Armadillos should be big too.

This is a band that really knows their shit. They wield their instruments masterfully, which is all the more amazing considering their instruments include things like accordions, tin flutes, mandolins and cellos. Wrap this all up with amazing skill and some amazing voices and you have folk gold on your hands. Honestly. The Armadillos are my 8th most played band for the past year, even though I only own 8 songs by them.

The album seems to inhabit the period between the end of the Revolutionary until the industrial revolution gripped America. Even though there are a fair number of years between those two events, the album seems a solid, cohesive unit. This is more than just half-hearted nostalgia, though. These artisans have crafted some amazing songs that feel period, even while being spruced up with tempos and instruments not native to the time. When I listen to Yorktown, for example, I’m not thinking about the Armadillos. I’m thinking about Yorktown, and what it would be like to be on that battlefield.

Admittedly, some songs have me more than others. I adore Eleanor. So, so, so much. I’m also quite partial to Devil’s Rag, and of course York Town. Some songs don’t have the immediate appeal of those three, but are still utterly lovely songs. The only song I’m not partial to is the Donner Party, and I admit it’s exclusively because I’m a weeny. I can’t just listen to it as a song. No, I must imagine what it would be like to be forced to eat a friend, neighbor or acquaintance due to starvation. It kind of bums me out, contemplating if I’d eat my best friend, and thus, I don’t listen to that song.

But can we focus on Eleanor for a minute? The song is utter perfection. From the opening mandolin to Sheila’s voice, it’s just so much. It’s so good. And the lyrics? They flow beautifully. There’s not a phrase that catches or a questionable verb. I don’t talk to many people, and few enough of them have a penchant for folk music, but by God I make people listen to this song.

Here. Go listen to them now. Right here. Don’t go to Myspace to listen to them. You click on them, Myspace ignores your request and starts playing Rihanna on J-pop. Best to skip that entirely and go to the bandcamp page. Bonus, once you decide they’re amazing and awesome and such, you can buy it. Right there. Whoo, convenience.

What to Expect?

The most amazing Revolutionary War/Industrial Revolution inspired indie folk of your life. Listen. Listen and be well.

What to take away?

The Armadillos should have more songs available to the public.

What drink to pair it with?

What to quaff with this album? A truly dizzying question. Whiskey and water, most likely. If that’s not up your alley, drink some Yuengling, if you’re lucky enough to be in a state where it’s available. I’m not, anymore.

Favorite song?

Eleanor. Eleanor for the win. Seriously. This song is among my favorite songs ever of all time. Go listen to it, and it’ll be one of yours too.


Great band!

by: Cindy on 2011.02.19 at 17:29

Comments are moderated.

Return to Top