Rob Ickes and Trey Hensley - 'The Country Blues' (album stream) (premiere)
Virtuosic country duo Rob Ickes and Trey Hensley are ready to thrill audiences with their new LP The Country Blues.
The Country Blues is exactly what it sounds like: gently lilting country, occasionally veering into rippin’ territory but largely staying in a more pensive mood. It’s downcast, but it’s downcast in the nevertheless optimistic way the best folky country can be. It’s fiercely focused on both tribulations and overcoming them, much like the music of the greats covered here -- there’s some Merle Haggard, there’s some Sonny Boy Williamson. It broaches the divide between emotional complexity and simple joy and pride, and for that it should be commended. PopMatters' Sarah Zupko wrote that "Ickes and Hensley can seriously burn up the fretboard with some of the most amazing country playing you'll hear anywhere. In fact, they are so good that they could almost take on Ricky Skaggs with their passion and precision.
“We're loving the diversity of material on this album, and were real proud to have recorded everything live,” say Ickes and Hensley.
The Country Blues releases July 8th. Before then, stream the full thing below.