Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Album Review: Ordinary Heroes

Title: Ordinary Heroes (Riot Folk)

Ryan Harvey is a folk punk artist that is part of the Riot Folk label/collective. His latest release, Ordinary Heroes, is politically charged folk punk that reminds me of Woody Guthrie. The music is simple, an acoustic guitar with the occasional fiddle, and the singing is heartfelt with a very Gordon Gano feel to it. The politics of the lyrics range from a condemnation of the Tea Party to the Arab Spring to songs about the working class and odes to the likes of Martin Luther King Jr and Woody Guthrie.

Often when you have artists that mix folk and country with punk roots, you still hear the punk heritage in the music.  That is not the case with Ryan Harvey’s Ordinary Heroes.  This is a folk record, pure and simple.  In fact, this record has much more in common with Woody Guthrie than the Ramones.  If you are a fan of Chuck Ragan; Defiance, Ohio; Frank Turner; or Austin Lucas then you should definitely check out Ryan Harvey, just be ready for an actual folk record.  

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