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The O's

Honeycomb – 2016 (Puynch Five)

Reviewed by Dustin Blumhagen

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CDs by The O's

The O's are a fun roots band, comprised of ex-Polyphonic Spree members John Pedigo and Taylor Young, who showcase plenty of inspiration from traditional American music. There is a touch of bluegrass and string band element to their sound, but they are decisively contemporary.

The album begins with "Fourteen Days" which has much more in common with Old Man Markley than Ralph Stanley. It serves as an introduction to their interesting sound. Rather than focusing upon the restrictions of a specific genre, The O's appear content drawing from a deep well of musical history. Where many of their peers seem self-conscious of experimenting with a blend of traditional and modern elements (Punch Brothers representing the extreme opposite end of the spectrum), these songs are far from stifled in their creativity. On "Medicine," they bring to mind Jacob Dylan with folk accompaniment, while there are heavy doses of early 90's alternative bands present throughout. The banjo is an ever-present instrument, but only one element of a diverse sound.

The O's showcase an interesting sound on "Honeycomb"; a fresh take on folk with a slight rock and roll edge. They hail from the Texas music scene, but they sound more like the products of Portland hipster coffeehouses than rowdy honky tonks.