When The Waymores were pitched to me as an americana/honky tonk duo, that immediately had me intrigued.
One listen through the duo’s debut release “Weeds” tells an even greater story. Blending the sounds of outlaw country, southern rock, honky tonk, and americana music, The Waymores showcase a great level of artistic versatility throughout the album.
The duo, comprised of Kira Annalise and Willie Heath Neal, also display great harmonies throughout the release, which is evident from the first song, “Matches.”
As soon as the song starts, you’re hit with that classic sound that has been so hard to find in today’s format. Reminiscent of an outlaw song meeting a Johnny Cash song, “Matches” also features a guitar solo, which sounds like it would fit perfectly in a Merle Haggard song. This is a great story song to start the album, and the trading of vocals takes it over the top.
The theme of great story songs continues with the next track, “Moe Brown.” Willie delivers some great, deep baritone notes throughout the song, which features a nice added element of continuity between verses. By the end of the song, it feels as if you really do know “Moe Brown,” meaning the band has succeeded with the song.
“Moe Brown” is followed by the title-track, “Weeds.” Kira delivers an excellent vocal, and the rasp in her voice adds a nice soulful touch to the song. Continuing the theme of great harmonies, the sparse instrumentality on this song really allows the vocal tracks to shine. “Weeds” is one of the standout tracks on the release.
As the next track, “Bring You Down” begins, a 90s Dwight Yoakam feel floods through the speakers. The trading of vocals works well with the lyric, and the duo singing together during the bridge is a great touch.
“Dumb Old Dog” rounds out the album the same way it started, with a Johnny Cash vibe tying the song together. The instrumentation and melody on this track are excellent, and the trading of vocals and harmonies throughout work very well. This song is another one of the standouts on the album.
“Weeds,” composed of five short, sweet, and to the point songs; none totaling three minutes in length, brings back a lot of the basics that have been so hard to come by in recent years. If you’re a fan of great harmonies and stories, you’ll be a fan of The Waymores.
*Images courtesy of The Waymores*