Album Review: The Infamous Stringdusters – Undercover Vol. 2

The Infamous Stringdusters, with their marathon touring schedule, have somehow found time to drop their 3rd release this year.  Undercover Vol. 2 offers an incredible follow-up to their highly-touted Undercover EP from 2015.  The album offers a way for the band to break genre boundaries with covers by an eclectic track listing of artists, young and old alike.

The Cure’s blockbuster “Just Like Heaven” is first up on the five track EP. With the fiddle holding the synth parts down, the group displays their high-energy take on New Wave; the crisp inflective vocals lend a new raw twist of emotion to this iconic 80s love song.

Soul meets bluegrass in their version of “What’s Going On?” as the band puts a rootsy spin on Marvin Gaye’s sweet sound of 70s.  It’s tough to do Marvin justice, but there is little disappointment with the Stringduster’s tribute.  Harmonies throughout the chorus meet unlikely banjo solos to keep the recognized groove alive.

Plucking of simple chords paired with vocal echoes finish off the EP with the often-covered “Get Lucky,” from Grammy award-winning French electronic duo Daft Punk.  Their choice imitation of Daft’s sensational pop tune hits all the right notes in this jammy, uptempo version that retains that familiar dance beat.

A cursory glance at the five-song tracklist reveals that their choice of songs for rootsy reimaginings may seem ambitious, but this quintet possesses the moxie to wield each cover.  With their infectious string playing and fresh take on what the genre can be, the band continues to run full steam ahead.

[Purchase Undercover Vol. 2, out Friday, October 27th, HERE.]

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TOUR DATES:

Fri 10/27 — Denver, CO — Ogden Theatre (support from Pert Near Sandstone)

Sat 10/28 — Denver, CO — Ogden Theatre (support from Midnight North)

Thu 11/9 — Kansas City, MO — Madrid Theatre (co bill w/ The Travelin’ McCourys)

Fri 11/10 — Minneapolis, MN — Fine Line Music Café (co bill w/ The Travelin’ McCourys // support from Ryan Young & Erik Berry of Trampled by Turtles)

Sat 11/11 — Madison, WI — Majestic Theatre (support from Ryan Young & Erik Berry of Trampled by Turtles)

Sun 11/12 — Kalamazoo, MI — Bell’s Eccentric Café (An evening with…)

Tue 11/14 — Detroit, MI — St. Andrews Hall (support from Wire in the Wood)

Wed 11/15 — Pittsburgh, PA — Rex Theatre (support from Buffalo Rose)

Thu 11/16 — Buffalo, NY — Tralf Music Hall (support from Intredpid Travelers)

Fri 11/17 — New York, NY — Irving Plaza (support from Cris Jacobs)

Sat 11/18 — Baltimore, MD — Rams Head Live (support from Cris Jacobs)

*Fri-Tue 12/8-12/12 — Puerto Morelos, MX — Strings & Sol

Thu 12/14 — Chattanooga, TN — The Revelry Room (support from Dangermuffin)

*Fri 12/15 — Hickory, NC — Music In The Mill

Sat 12/16 — Charleston, SC — Music Farm (co bill w/ Dangermuffin)

Thu 12/28 — Berkeley, CA — UC Berkeley Theatre (co bill w/ Keller Williams)

Fri 12/29 — Berkeley, CA — UC Berkeley Theatre (co bill w/ Leftover Salmon)

Sun 12/31 — Aspen, CO — Wheeler Opera House (An evening with…)

 

*Festival appearances

 

 

Rich Harley

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