Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Western Giants' EP combines country and dreamy indie in an groundbreaking way

March 9, 2010

It constantly amazes me what can be done with music. There is a finite number of notes and chords in the world, but hundreds of thousands of bands keep churning them out in different ways. Just when I think that I’ve got a handle on all that is in the indie rock world, I get knocked for a loop. Western GiantsLong Live the Live Long Day is that latest loop.

Western Giants is a band from Texas, and as such they incorporate country music into their amalgam (it’s really almost impossible not to if you’re from Texas; even the metal there has a country swagger). But they also include a strain of energetic, easy-going indie rock that’s been popping up in Oklahoma in bands like The Uglysuit, The Non, and more. These two elements together create a dreamy, lazy, warm sound that I’ve never heard before. It’s like what would happen if country artists started listening to the majestic Margot and the Nuclear So & Sos or the wide-eyed Annuals. Or maybe it’s the sound of indie hipsters not just rocking cowboy boots but actually getting on the horse for a weekend of work. Either way, it’s glorious.

There’s only four songs on this EP, and that distresses me. I wish there were a full album of this, because it’s simply fantastic. From the supremely indie chilled out keys of “Long Live the Live Long Day” to the spare, folksy drumming and accordion of “Once We Reach the Other Side” to the pressing indie beauty of “As Hard as the Road Ahead” back to the charming country strum of “Park,” there are moments in each of these songs that make it hard for me to declare a stand-out track. They’re all highlights.

I could dedicate more words to Long Live the Live Long Day, but I don’t need more than this: Western Giants plays a mix of mellow country and dreamy, lazy indie that will leave you speechless. It’s the best EP of the year so far. You need this EP, and you need to follow this band. Up-and-comers in the indie scene for sure.

Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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