Deadly Gentlemen, Joy Kills Sorrow
Saturday, August 18, 2012, 8:00 pm (doors open at 7:00 pm)modern folk and hardcore bluegrass $20.50 advance / $22.50 at doorPurchase tickets online
August 18 8:00 pm

Deadly GentlemenThe great thing about The Deadly Gentlemen is not their technical proficiency—though these guys do have mad skills—it’s the music they create: joyful, playful, and often beautiful. You could say they speak bluegrass with a rock and roll accent. Greg Liszt, banjo and vocals, earned a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from MIT and immediately went on tour playing banjo for Bruce Springsteen. He currently tours with Crooked Still. Stash Wyslouch, guitar and vocals, brings a heavy-metal passion for raking on guitar and screaming in harmony. Dominick Leslie, mandolin and vocals, used to be a mandolin prodigy, but now that he’s turned 20, he’s just damn good. Mike Barnett, fiddle and vocals, started touring at 15 with bluegrass legend Jesse McReynolds and currently tours with the Tony Trischka Band and the David Grisman Quintet. Sam Grisman, double bass and vocals, first learned the ways of music from his father, David, and has been playing gigs all his life, fusing traditional bluegrass bass technique with an uncanny knack for finding just the right unexpected note. Here’s how the band describes their sound: “Instead of having a lead singer, we use a nonstop orchestration of somewhat unconventional vocals, with everybody in the band doing everything they can. Expect a lot of three-part harmony singing, group shouting, really dense rhymes, and an almost rap-like phrasing.”

Joy Kills SorrowJoy Kills Sorrow brings its own decidedly modern sensibility to an old-world sound, channeling the prodigious abilities of its individual members into elegant arrangements and well-crafted songs. The band takes its name from a radio station that hosted Bill Monroe in the 1930s, “WJKS, where joy kills sorrow.” Starting from its deep bluegrass roots, the band gracefully weaves in elements of rock, pop, and jazz to make music than can be dark and often funny: a new strain of folk that ruminates on contemporary life and love with eloquence and wit while saluting the past. Singout! Magazine praised the band’s latest CD, This Unknown Science, as “an exquisitely recorded and sequenced set that kept my interest from the first riff of the guitar on ‘Kill My Sorrow’ to the last sexy downbeat of ‘You Make Me Feel Drunk.’” With founding member and award-winning flatpicking guitarist Matthew Arcara, mandolin virtuoso Jacob Jolliff, uncommon banjo ace Wesley Corbett, distinctive songwriter and bassist Bridget Kearney, and singer Emma Beaton, the Canadian Folk Music Awards’ Young Performer of the Year in 2008, Joy Kills Sorrow lives up to its name, with luminous originals rich in rhythmic complexity and percussive texture, and lovely vocals that linger in the mind long after the show is over.

Better free up your Saturday night, because these two string bands straight outta Boston deliver modern folk and bluegrass multiplied to the second power.

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