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The Lonesome Heroes

Don't Play to Lose

(Floodwater; US: 30 Mar 2006; UK: Unavailable)

The Lonesome Heroes hail from Austin by way of Brooklyn. As such, the group touts themselves as country music with a psychedelic slant. They are neither as epic nor stoned as the Flying Burrito Brothers or the Beachwood Sparks, but hints of Mazzy Star and Galaxie 500 shoegaze meanderings are present. The Lonesome Heroes’ haze is closer to sunstroke when objects start to take on a wobbly, oil-slicked outline. On the EP Don’t Play to Lose, Rich Russell details the cold, hard country facts with a steady lead guitar and punctuated vocals while Landry McLean’s highly polished resonator and heavy lap steel reverb create a watery distortion that floats through each track. The resulting layered fuzzy contrast is what drives their sound. The tracks “The Moon and the Sun” and “Oyster” highlight McLean’s haunting and captivating vocal that sound like she snuck away from the campfire in the middle of the night to record. The five tracks are not enough to determine if the Lonesome Heroes can by carried by more than McLean’s steel, but keeps you adequately interested to see what will come.

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