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Schwindy's indie music spotlight: Hillstomp (Portland, Ore)

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Portland, Ore

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You know sometimes when you see a band for the first time, it sticks with you. Well, the first time I encountered Hillstomp was at the now-defunct Gypsy Lounge in Lake Forest. This duo from Portland was a complete revelation to me not only because of the sound, but also because of the setup of the band. I was quite taken with the drum kit that consisted of buckets, roast pans, and other non-traditional percussion.

When the band sent me a message that it has a new album coming out, I sort of knew what to expect. I knew it would be full of gritty blues tunes inspired by the north Mississippi. Let me tell you that the band does not disappoint. "Life I Want" borrows from one of the great north Mississippi bluesmen: R.L. Burnside.

Then comes "Undertow," which is about as country as country blues gets. On this song, Henry plays a banjo part that would fit just as well in a bluegrass song while Johnplays a very minimal rhythm. This song is a bit like some of Steve Earle's songs.

If I had to pick a favorite song on this album, it would be "15 White Horses." Take some trance-blues guitar, add a train beat and some lo-fi vocals, and what you have is a song that is virtually irresistible. Seriously folks, if this one doesn't get your foot stompin', I have no idea what will. Then you hear the end of it and your foot will get stomping even faster. Holy moly! This song will give you a great workout.

This is another great album from Hillstomp - just as I expected. It is full of lo-fi blues that will get your feet stomping. If you like R.L. Burnside or Mississippi Fred McDowell, this album will fit right into your collection.

Contact me if you want to be considered for an upcoming edition of Schwindy's indie music spotlight.

gmail: gonewiththeschwind

Facebook: gary.schwind

Twitter: incognitomag

PO Box 2070, Mission Viejo CA 92690

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