Don McCloskey is a singer songwriter from Bristol, Pennsylvania who draws inspiration from folk singers, MCs, TV Evangelists, conmen and junk mail. His fearless creativity in experimenting with form and lyrical content has earned him mainstream radio play, national touring spots and a dedicated fan base across the country while remaining completely independent. Here he releases his second full-length album Northern Liberties from his indie record label Lemon Hill Records.
Recorded over a three-month period in the Northern Liberties section of Philadelphia, Northern Liberties marks a welcome departure and growth from McCloskey's debut, Bombs Over Bristol. Teaming up with engineer, co-producer and musician Tom Spiker, McCloskey replaces the sampled and overdubbed digital landscape of Bombs with the stripped down organic grooves provided by a powerful four-piece acoustic punk band. Former Bad Brains drummer Chuck Treece delivers a powerful performance that perfectly accompanies McCloskey's chugging acoustic guitars and rapid-fire lyrical delivery. Tom Spiker plays double duty, laying down both the rock-solid bass lines and a tapestry of textured electric guitars. The foursome is rounded off by keyboardist, George Hazelrigg, who adds color and space to the second half of the album. The overall effect of the new band is a lean, raw environment that breaths life and power into McCloskey's lyrically dense folk-hop-punk songs.
Philadelphia's G. Love makes a welcome cameo on Northern Liberties, both co-producing and providing a searing harmonica solo on the opening track, The Beautiful Girl In the Beautiful Car. As a whole, McCloskey's follow up is a bold step forward as songwriter, performer and producer.