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These United States: Honor Amongst Thieves

Here is an entertaining interview with These United States’ Jesse Elliott from Seven Days, an online publication in Vermont. Consequence of Sound reviews of the band’s recently released album.

This is from a review of the album, which is self-titled, at Philadelphia Weekly:

While TUS’ music has always retained Elliott’s penchant for narratives and storytelling, it has evolved from the euphoric honky-tonk and earnest Americana found on the band’s earlier albums to a mature, alt-country version of the Counting Crows, as exemplified on 2010’s What Lasts. With their eponymous album, the band not only retains plenty of honky-tonk and American balladry, but incorporates hints of ’60s garage and classic rock.

Here are The Great Rivers, Water & Wheat, Study the Moon and So High, So Low, So Wide, So Long.

Here is the band’s MySpace and Facebook pages and its site.

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Here’s What’s Here

The Daily Music Break explores every genre of music, from hip hop to opera. It's simple: Boundaries are dumb. It's all good. Here is more about the site and here is our index:

--A Tribe Called Quest to The Dick Hyman Trio (In other words, A to H)

--Indigo Girls to Queen Ida (I to Q)

--Radiohead to ZZ Top (R to Z)

Reading Music

The stories of the great bands and musicians are fascinating. Musicians as a group are brilliant, but often troubled. The combination of creativity and drama makes for great reading.

Here are some books to check out.

Duke Ellington brought class, sophistication and style to jazz which, until that point, was proudly unpolished and raucous. His story is profound. The author, Terry Teachout, also wrote "Pops," the acclaimed bio of Louis Armstrong. Click here or on the image.

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What else is there to say? Here is the story behind every song written by The Beatles. Click here or on the image.

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The Grateful Dead don't get enough credit for the profound nature of its lyrics. Many of the band's songs are driven by a deep and literate Americana ("I'm Uncle Sam/That's who I am/Been hidin' out/In a rock and roll band" and "Majordomo Billy Bojangles/Sit down and have a drink with me/What's this about Alabama/Keeps comin' back to me?").

David Dodd's exhaustive study tells the story, song by song. Click here or on the image.