Darker the Night
In Music We Trust
The Portland, Oregon-based Hillstomp veer from the dirty Mississippi blues of R.L. Burnside on “Jumper on the Line,” to Bad Livers-styled yeehaw mayhem with “Banjo Song #1,” without sounding like they’re faking a blessed moment along the way. They manage to make the old chestnut “Crawdad Hole” sound sexy and ominous, and the whole record has a Tom Waits-ian sense of impending doom and fatalism amid its distorted slide guitars and nimble banjo pickin’.
Raunchy blues duos are all the rage these days, from the Black Keys to White Stripes, and Hillstomp fits in with these better known examples like gravy on a biscuit. Add that damned infernal banjo and you have a home run. Get aboard and hold on!