2008 Best Music Poll Winners


Halellujah the Hills, “Halellujah the Hills”

It’s too bad more people didn’t have a chance to catch Ryan Walsh’s previous band, the Stairs, until they’d broken up, leaving one of the better local albums of 2005 in their wake. But the good news is that singer/guitarist Walsh and drummer Eric Meyer (also of Ho-Ag) already had another project underway, and they pretty much picked up where the Stairs left off with “Hallelujah the Hills.” In other words, they maintained the anything-goes, DIY spirit of lo-fi, home recording while adding ever more sophisticated musical touches to their arrangements. That also meant bringing on board another guitarist who also plays cello (David Bentley), multi-instrumentalist Matt Brown (who’s since been replaced by Elio DeLuca), and bassist Joe Marrett. With Walsh sounding more and more like a word-drunk rock savant and the rest of the band rocking hard and melodically à la Guided by Voices, it wasn’t long before the indie label Misra came calling. And that’s what led to this inspired recording of “Hallelujah the Hills,” one of the more anthemic tracks onCollective Psychosis Begone, replete with warmly distorted vocals and a brassy hook. It’s a promising full-length from a band who will hopefully stick around a bit longer than the Stairs.

— Matt Ashare

LISTEN:Hallelujah the Hills, "Hallelujah the Hills" (mp3)

1. Drug Rug, “Tiny People”
2. Juliana Hatfield w/Frank Smith, “A Beer & A Shot”
3. Buffalo Tom, “You’ll Never Catch Him”

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