[Photo by Cambria Harkey]
The Heartless Bastards have announced the release of The Mountain via Fat Possum on February 3 of next year, and it has been described to us as a "killer record with bourbon-soaked grit that's hypnotic like hill-country blues," and that main bastard Erika Wennerstrom, "rocks like Patti Smith fronting Crazy Horse or John Lee Hooker as a girl." But we're still skeptical that it can sound nearly as gritty or bourbon-soaked as this acoustic version of the single "Searching For The Ghost".
In fact, this version of their single from 2006's All This Time is so raw that you begin to hear Erika start talking about her contacts before the song cuts off, but that's the beauty of the track. In fact, that's the beauty of the Cincinnati, OH trio+rotating cast. Their stripped down, bare bones songwriting is what sets them apart from many of their contemporaries. When you add amps and microphones they become a garage or country rock band, but in the acoustic arena, at their very most exposed, you can hear the subtle nuances they adhere to their craft. If there's a better song to listen to while sipping on some harsh brown liquor, we implore you to show us.
MP3 Download - "Searching For The Ghost" (Acoustic)
For those of you jonesing for some new material, you can hear demo cuts from The Mountain on their MySpace, along with their upcoming tour dates (note the shows with label mates the Black Keys the weekend of their record release).
Heartless Bastards tour dates
11.18.08 - Omaha, NE (Waiting Room)
11.19.08 - Lawrence, KS (The Bottleneck)
11.21.08 - Dallas, TX (Club Dada)*
11.22.08 - Austin, TX (Stubb's)#
12.26.08 - Dayton, OH (Canal Street Tavern)
12.27.08 - Cleveland, OH (Beachland Ballroom)
12.28.08 - Toledo, OH (Frankies)
02.05.08 - Philadelphia, PA (Electric Factory)**
02.06.08 - New York, NY (Terminal 5)**
* with Black Joe Lewis
# with The Golden Boys
** with Black Keys