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Small Town Songs With Broken Creek

Broken Creek Duo Reviewed

Erin Heycox and Lachlan Heycox

Broken Creeks’ Striking Debut Release

“Small Town Anthropologies’

20 May 2022

By Rob Dickens

Broken Creek are Erin Heycox (vocals/fiddle) and Lachlan Heycox (guitar/banjo/mandolin/percussion).

Small Town Anthropologies is an impressive debut, drawing on a variety of folk and old-time traditional material, showcasing over the ten tracks a tasteful blend of original material and covers of songs from England, Scotland, Ireland and America.

The pair grew up in rural Victoria exposed to Australian pastoral ballads, legends and artists before moving to the ‘big smoke’ of Melbourne (the duo takes its name from the creek Erin grew up near). This is not just an orthodox outing though, rather Broken Creek provide some fresh and keen observations and treatment to keep the listener engaged.

“I love traditional folk songs but I’m sick of singing about murdered women

Erin Heycox

The original songs are never far from their hometowns – “Picola” is about the feelings of returning home while “Here Is My Home” reflects the ever-present threat of fires in the Australian bush. The covers include “Cutty Wren” (a peasants’ revolt story), the standards “In The Pines” and “Shady Grove”, the Appalachian tune “Darlin’ Kora” and the 19th Century English folk song “Black Leg Miner” recorded by Richard Thompson.

Here’s the opening track “Broomfield Hill” which recounts a deadly wager:

The songs were recorded in their home studio in inner west Melbourne during the long COVID lockdowns of 2020-21, mixed by Mischa Herman and mastered by Myles Mumford. Instrumentation used included a fretless banjo, octave mandolin, kanjira drum, Bodhran and a shruti drone box.

The pair will be launching Small Town Anthropologies on 20 May.

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Broken Creek Duo Reviewed

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Author: Rob Dickens

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