Monday, April 18, 2011
Billy Wallace and the Virginia Blues - Lesser Lights
Last night, Idle and the Bear saw an amazing show of solo performances from Mikey Erg, Dave Hause, Ian Graham, and Billy Wallace. I never heard of Billy Wallace, despite him living a city away and his band sometimes involving the old drummer from The Dopamines. But, you know, now I've heard of him. He played an awesome set, and when he said his album was up on Death to False Hopes, I kicked myself for not having downloaded it yet. But now I'm on top of that shit, so it's all good. So do what I did, and head over to DTFH and download this album.
This is some folky shit, dudes. It's clear as folk (forgive me this pun, lord) who his influences are. His vocals sound similar to Lou Reed, and the instrumentals and songwriting give more of a modern nod to Bob Dylan. "Hold On, San Francisco" is a about a girl, which makes it obvious how easily he fit onto a sorta pop punk show. His lyrics are very similar to the style of the folk punk scene, despite his music not really being folk punk. They're lyrics meant to point out the obvious, and tell every part of a story.
"Mustard Seeds" starts off with Billy playing his harmonica, which was around his neck throughout his set last night. Sometimes this stuff can get too country for me to grasp onto, but for the most part, the lyrics are enough to keep you hooked throughout. He can't be from Covington, with his accent, though. He has to have lived further south and moved up. Or maybe he just puts it on, I'm not sure.
I think you can pretty much get a feel for all of this EP by checking out the last song, "A Love Song For Johannes Kelper." It's definitely the best song on the release, and includes a trumpet, piano, and the standard awesome lyricism. You can get the album from DTFH, as I stated above. And you can find him on facebook here. Check this release out, and see him live if you ever get a chance. I'm not sure if he tours so often, but you can always just go to Cincinnati on your own, since it's awesome here.