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Minto: Burnt Down Trainbridge Blues

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From their album Lay It On Me

Lay It On Me Transformation. Rebirth. Renewal. The Vancouver vagabonds formerly known as The Smokes have charted something of a non-traditional course over their half-decade of existence. The beginning? A rustic ode to Appalachia and steel guitar strings. Now? A seething all-pistons rock band fresh off recorded an album with living legend Steve Albini. But the crooked path they’ve taken has made the five-piece all the more compelling. With Lay It On Me the transformation is monstrous. The band’s sound is still smokey, still filled with backwoods stomp, but Albini’s fingerprints are all over this thing – the guitars snarl, feedback ferociously; the drums are as cavernous and imposing as can be; and the vocals drip with the sort of hot mic intensity the Chicago native has made a career out of coaxing from bands big and small. [The Musebox]

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