Sugar Hill will officially release the new record from The Duhks, Fast Paced World, on August 12. If what I’ve heard so far is any indication, the new sound is a radical departure for this folk-funk band, and yet a logical evolution as well. When first I heard The Duhks, I was attracted by their red-hot sets of Irish reels and soulful interpretations of songs penned by the likes of Gillian Welch, and accompanied by Cuban percussion, John Doyle style guitar, and old-time clawhammer banjo. Not to mention their propensity to sit down after hours and play tunes til dawn.
Vocalist Jessee Harvey and percussionist Scott Senior have been replaced by siblings Sarah and Christian Dugas, respectively. Sarah’s vocals sound even more soulful than those of Jessee were, and the Cuban percussion kit has been replaced by a full drum kit, resulting in a more pop/rock and less folkie mix. Nashville producer Jay Joyce created a big full sound, with some modern techno-touches thrown in. Hear preview tracks on their MySpace page.
Recently the Duhks launched The Duhks Sustainability Project, a “go green” website spearheaded by fiddler Tania Elizabeth. From that site, check out this YouTube video featuring the title track of the new record.
For those of you—er, I mean us—who might be missing the old-time folkie Duhks, Leonard Podolak (banjo) and Jordan McConnell (guitar) have recorded a cool little record of trad-based tunes and songs with fiddler Lydia Garrison of Turtle Island Dream. The band is called TurtleDuhks, the album True Lover, and it’s sweeeeeeeeet! All God’s chillens gotta saw that old-time some time…