Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Review -- HIGHWATER JUG BAND - Self Titled

SELF-TITLED
Highwater Jug Band
Hoodoo Records
9-out-of-10

Talk about a world of joyful noise. Say hello to the Highwater Jug Band, a Calgary band which is a throwback to a far earlier time in the world of blues/folk music.
When you read about this band they talk a lot about a focus on music which was spun out on crackly 78 LPs, and that pretty much sums this band up. This music would have fit on the older phonographs real well.
What adds to the authenticity of the music is the band's instrumentation. “The Highwater Jug Band perform with an array of instruments including ukuleles, guitars, banjos, mandolins, clarinet, washboard, kazoo, harmonica, musical saw, tambourine, drums, bells, whistles, toys, a home made wash tub bass contraption called a “muck-bucket” and yes – jugs,” explained the bands website.
The band includes Mark Sadlier Brown, Tim Williams, Cedric Blary, Suitcase James and John Rutherford, and that tells you this is a gathering of veteran performers coming together to create something fun and nostalgic, and boy do they accomplish that goal well.
This is a fun album, spurred by the instrumentation, the historic style, and the consummate skill of the band members.
This is like a jump back in time by half a century, and it's a time warp you will be glad you made.
This would be a great band for a concert at an event like the Grain Millers Harvest Showdown in Yorkton – fun, upbeat, countrified and exciting.
I won't try to pick a favourite here. There are a dozen cuts, and all are gems. I love this one.
A MUST have. Check them out at www.highwaterjugband.com
-- CALVIN DANIELS

-- Review first appeared in Yorkton This Week newspaper Feb. 13, 2008 - Yorkton, SK. Canada

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