Trampled By Turtles, Live Session #90

by oz on June 28, 2011

Trampled By Turtles are my kind of Bluegrass band. They don’t have that clean, crisp Nashville sound you may think of when you think “Bluegrass music.” Instead, they embrace a looser sound that blends rock and punk into their twang.

TxT hails from Duluth, MN and have quietly released five albums, the latest of which is one of my personal favorites of last year. Palomino is a brilliant record that balances furious energy, calming ballads, frantic finger-picking, three-part harmonies, and startlingly good songwriting. Three of the four songs in this session, Victory, Help You, and New Orleans, can be found on Palomino. The heartbreaking ballad entitled Widower’s Heart is a new and unreleased track whose title requires little explanation on its subject matter.

I’ve seen them twice at SxSW in two consecutive years and they were in my top three sets each year. Dave Simonett (guitar/vocals), Ryan Young (fiddle), Erik Berry (mandolin/vocals), Dave Carroll (banjo, vocals), and Tim Saxhaug (bass/vocals) each command their instruments and demand equal attention from the audience. I was chatting with an old friend before they took the stage at HomeSlice Pizza last year in Austin and halfway into their first song, we ended our conversation mid-sentence and didn’t take our eyes off the stage until the set concluded. “Good” is an understatement.

Trampled By Turtles have a few tour dates left this summer, so catch up with them if you can. No matter how hot it is, there’s a very good chance that Erik Berry will be wearing overalls, a cowboy hat, and full beard.

Trampled By Turtles Band Intro

Exclusive: Trampled By Turtles – Widower’s Heart

Exclusive: Trampled By Turtles – Victory

Exclusive: Trampled By Turtles – New Orleans

Exclusive: Trampled By Turtles – Help You

Download the Trampled By Turtles Live Session as a Zip File.

Video: Trampled By Turtles – Widower’s Heart (Live In Chicago at Shirk Music + Sound)

Video: Trampled By Turtles – Victory (Live In Chicago at Shirk Music + Sound)

Video: Trampled By Turtles – Help You (Live In Chicago at Shirk Music + Sound)

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Woody June 29, 2011 at 10:05 am

As good a live as act you’ll see today. Their playing is spot on and they have a way of lifting you in a live setting. Their set at HomeSlice this past year was simply amazing. People were dancing on rooftops of houses nearby. The crowd was one big organic mess of joy and energy. And all the while, TxT was just soaking it in. It was one of those scenes that makes SxSW so special.

justin beghly July 1, 2011 at 10:29 am

One of the best original live acts out today a must see. Their latest album Palimino is not to be missed, it’s a top ten of all time for me.

nic koller July 4, 2011 at 12:43 pm

I’m really enjoying the videos. I am not surprised (at all) that the folks at South By really ate this up. I’ve heard so much amazing Americana and Bluegrass in Austin. These guys are great.

Ben Drewelow July 11, 2011 at 4:33 am

Thanks for sharing Widower’s Heart. We saw them do this down in Telluride along with another new one. Both great songs. Dave’s songwriting is getting better all the time.

Robert January 9, 2012 at 4:40 pm

I wouldn’t have thought in a million years I’d ever listen to bluegrass or anything of the type. I just happened to come across one of their song “The Outskirts” one day and to say the least…I’m completely sold on these guys. Absolutely the best band I’ve seen live or heard in the past 15 years. Superbly written songs and the utmost instrumental talent has kept me hooked. Almost every one of their songs I can relate to and it gives you this sense of serenity. I can’t say enough about these guys and I’m glad I discovered them… my favorite band for life…

Ani Grace August 9, 2012 at 3:55 am

Mass kudos for simplicity an’ authenticity, great performance on the L-show t’nite
…lookin’ forward t’seein’ more. Love the new release, can’t wait for the tour…<3

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