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Hometown Marie Hometown Marie
Album: Wild Side
Label: Self Released
Tracks: 4

Swedish Americana anyone? Yes, I know it's a little incongruous but once you get past the dull and uninspiring cover art (someone please tell artists that this is your window to the world - an awful cover in a rack of albums is liable to be skimmed over pretty damn quick!), the music itself is full on electric country americana that has all the notes and voices in the right places at the right time, and certainly wouldn't be out of place blasting out at volume 11 in a bar on Broadway in Nashville!

I really would have liked to have had a little more information about this intrepid and obviously highly talented bunch of Swedes, but a website is conspicuous by it's absence, and the bands Facebook page is only slightly more informative than no information at all! I gather that they are a 5 piece from their home town of Mariestad and that one of the 4 tracks contained therein, "Yours Tonight" is their new single. Again slightly confusing, that the Facebook page states they have 4 members, whereas many of their photos, and indeed the cover of the EP itself shows 5.

Fame by confusion and stealth?! I've heard that before believe it or not!

The single itself (which again is confusingly not the lead track!), "Yours Tonight", is a cracking slab of commercial, hook-laden country rockin' americana that would be at home on any album of any top line American country artist that you care to name. That's the confusing bit for me - here's a band that clearly know how to write and record some fantastic tunes, they just need someone to steer them in the right direction when it comes to presentation and promotion.

"Like We Used To", "Run To You" and "Wild Side" (no, not THAT one!), rock along in a similar vein, with beautifully melodic twin guitar breaks interwoven with understated pedal steel to form near-perfect slices of country rockin' americana pop. Think Chris Stapleton meets Scotland's late-lamented Hendrick Brothers and you get some idea of the potential that has been laid down in these grooves.

"Wild Side" as a whole is certainly one of the more pleasing releases so far this year to these ears - Hometown Marie have some great songs to share with the world and the Americana scene in particular and it would be a massive shame if they're not heard by a wider audience!

Ken Brown