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The Brother Brothers The Brother Brothers
Album: Tugboats EP
Label: Mason Jar
Tracks: 6

It's a surprise that it is has taken so long for Adam and David Moss to team up and make music together. Identical twin brothers from Illinois, the two have long been solo performers, and have even performed with a variety of other musicians. Yet for whatever reason, they have seemingly been reluctant to team up. Given the strength of Tugboats, we can be very glad they finally did.

There is quite a mixture of influences at work here; bluegrass, blues, folk, and country are the more obvious styles at play here. The quiet and introspective title track eases us into the EP, with the fiddle of Adam Moss cutting in and out to add a mournful air to a tale of failed and unrequited love. Bird in a Tree is far more jaunty, with almost a Devendra Banhart feel to it.

Columbus Stockade Blues and Come Back Darling are both full of sorrow, but both achieve a simple sombre beauty. The latter especially is wonderfully engaging. Notary Public is a change of pace though, with a lively melody and a touch of humour, about giving away one's heart unwisely.

The EP closes out in a similar fashion to how it started, and it is a real highlight. Cairo, Il is a wonderful song, with what feels almost like the nearest to a traditional love song, though to a place rather than a person. It is nostalgic and full of heart.

This is blue-collar blues at its finest, and the Brother Brothers have produced an EP that you'll want to listen to again and again. It certainly whets the appetite for a full album, which will surely follow before too long.

Adam Jenkins