The Country Cauldron

You’re looking for something to match your lazy summer lounging. You want to kick back on a corn-husk breeze, a cold beer chasing pocket-warmed whiskey. You want something that sounds like the crisp tail of July in the Great Northwest. You want something that will take you far from the city heat and remind you of those light brown eyes that caught your attention on I-5.

Look no further. The Country Cauldron is an ambitious collection of Americana inspired country ramblings from the Renaissance Kids in Ashland, Oregon. They have recently released a compilation album, inspired by a pre-emptive nostalgia for their “Best Of” years and composed of selections spanning three years of musical experimentation.

With 20-tracks, there are definite A-sides and B-sides. The boys threw in something for the all the die-hard fans who want to impress a date with their knowledge of obscure, low-fi, neo-country wacko blues. There are the infections ditties (“Stupid Dog, “Ting-A-Ling”)  of questionable taste- the kind of tunes you’ll get stuck in your head and get embarrassed to be caught singing in public. There are the surefire, Dylan-esque country ballads like ” Marilee” and “Flush” that fill the belly with reckless sentimentality. There are countless moments of comedic brilliance and narrative wit that will give any fellow songwriter a twinge of jealousy. But the true gems are the bare chested, foot-stomping folktales like  “Walkin’ Down The Road”, “My Wife Left Me for the County Judge”, or the title track “Country Cauldron”.

These tracks are memorable and delightful…delicately balanced glimpses of timelessness. These are the kind of musical milliseconds where everything casually comes together, and you start to in believe in things like joy and beauty and peace and light. You start to think that maybe all the world’s a love song. Fall into a trance with a beautiful “Railroad Gypsy Gal”, face your reflection in “My Dog or My Dreams”, put your feet up and sip away.

The entire collection can be enjoyed for free on SoundCloud, compliments of Renaissance Kids Nick Addison and Scott Garriott.


~ by Vy on July 21, 2012.

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