ben miller band Choke Cherry Tree (CD, £10.50)label: new west
On ‘Choke Cherry Tree’, the Ben Miller Band have taken another step forward in both style and content. With lyrics ranging from irreverent to introspective, offering views on American history and the societal issues of today, the band deliver a career-defining album. What sets it apart sonically from previous albums is the addition of two new members, Smilin’ Bob and Rachel Ammons. The musical palette has expanded with four-part harmonies and a new batch of instruments from cello to homemade, one-off musical creations, forging a sound that is at once familiar and strange. As always, the songs are grounded by the pulsing washtub bass of Scott Leeper and the raw vocals and rhythmic slide guitar work of Ben Miller. The band’s ongoing evolution into an exciting new phase shows what has made this band so special and points to what will make them great in the years to come.
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