The Muse represents a quantum leap for the Wood Brothers as they fully integrate multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Jano Rix into the band, a process nurtured with not inconsiderable expertise by producer Buddy Miller. At the same time, the album suggests avenues of exploration for the threesome as they continue their evolution. Rix distinguishes himself immediately here by supplying a bouncy fluent piano foundation to Wasting My Mind." Interwoven with horns (saxophonist Jim Hoke, trombonist Bill Humber, trumpeter Steve Herman) vividly reminiscent of The Band's work with Allen Toussaint circa Rock of Ages (Capitol, 1972), it's reverent homage because ...read more
The Wood BrothersShowcase LoungeHigher GroundSouth Burlington, VTJune 4, 2013The distinct progression that's taken place since the Wood Brothers began playing together in 2004 has become an abiding pleasure to watch. Successive concerts evince distinct evolution and, in the latest appearance at this Vermont venue--again as a versatile trio--The Woods continued the slow inexorable movement toward playing like a full-fledged blues-rock band.When (not if!) that day comes, it will not be at the expense of the subtle charm that has been, and continues to be, their hallmark. Even as the elder sibling ...read more
The Wood BrothersLive Volume Two: Nail & ToothSouthern Ground2012While the Wood Brothers presented its live album, Sky High (Southern Ground, 2012), as a document of how its music has evolved since it resumed its partnership in 2004, it really didn't depict the progression as clearly as its successor does. As a companion piece Nail & Tooth illustrates how far the duo has come as collaborators, particularly as percussionist/vocalist Jano Rix has become integrated into the unit.Short as it is, Up Above My Head" sets a deeply earthy emotional tone with ...read more
The Wood Brothers began as a quirky duo with musical charm far out of proportion to its numbers. On Smoke Ring Halo the brothers continue as a trio (with plenty of guests),extending their collective virtues further still. The Woods' wry sense of humor comes through as clearly on Mary Anna" as drummer Tyler Greenwell's forthright beat, itself anchored by Chris Wood's bass. Sibling guitarist Oliver Wood has as light a touch with his rhythm guitar as he does his vocal phrasing on lines like ..."fumbling with the light switch to your heart..." On Shoofly Pie" The ...read more
Highlights of The Wood Brothers' live performances invariably include ingenious renditions of choice covers in addition to their own well-wrought originals. So it stands to reason they'd find it perfectly natural to put together this mini-album of outside material by the likes of Beck and Allen Toussaint, among others.
Returning to the strictly two-piece alignment from which they began and upon which they have built on their successive studio work, Up Above My_Head bristles with joyous energy right from the start of its opening title track. The Wood Brothers' chemistry has proven itself perfectly natural, almost to the ...read more
Like most of Loaded, The Wood Brothers' second album begins and ends with its respective companion pieces, Lovin' Arms" and Still Close," moving at a decidedly unhurried pace. The understatement at the heart of their approach distinguishes itself precisely because the sound is so quietly inviting.
Bassist Chris and guitarist Oliver Wood began their collaboration with the informal and deceptively ambitious Ways Not to Lose (Blue Note, 2006). Their second album expands upon its predecessor on every front, but a larger cast of accompanists and a more expansive selection of songs by no means lessen the ...read more
The Wood Brothers Higher Ground Showcase Lounge South Burlington, VT April 30th 2006
The Wood Brothers' CD, Ways Not to Lose, is the definition of understatment, so it may be overstatement to call it one of the best albums so far this year. Nevertheless, when you see these siblings live, you can understand their unassuming charm and find little to fault in their brew of blues, folk and jazz.
Born of a lifelong devotion to music, brothers Chris and Oliver Wood play with a natural empathy, for which no rigorous rehearsal schedule ...read more