Record review: The Rusty Datsuns – Riverbank (2013 LP)

This long-awaited debut album from The Rusty Datsuns has roots in the 2011 floods, when the Brisbane trio played tunes to keep their spirits up as the rising water lapped at the door of their Queenslander. Deeply rooted in traditional bluegrass and folk, but with a delicately jaunty modern vibe, Riverbank is a homely and engaging collection of songs put together by members of local acts Bessy-Lou, These Dirty Bones and Chocolate Strings. The circumstances of the band’s formation is telling in tracks like galloping instrumental ‘Let It Rain’ and the excellent title track, and the vocal harmonies on ‘Pastis’ and
playful piano tinkling on ‘Porcelain’ are more than impressive, while closer ‘Billy Bob’ injects a dose of stomp into proceedings. The overall positive approach to song-writing gives the album a warm and welcoming feel, making this the type of stuff best enjoyed with a dark oak ale in your hand and a piece of straw hanging from your grinning mouth.

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