- Rowdy vocals, old-time instruments, and a unique spin on traditional music are the meat and potatoes of Matt Ray and Those Damn Horses ambitious debut effort, Then and Now.
With thick layers of instrumentation fronted by Ray’s trademark worn, in-your-face voice, Matt Ray and Those Damn Horses are able to combine the smarts of John Prine with the raw energy of Old Crow Medicine Show. All while crafting a tightly produced, double album appealing to folk, bluegrass, country, and old-time fans alike.
To put it another way, Matt Ray and Those Damn Horses Then and Now takes you to a time where the roots of old time music are combined with the fiery energy of these modern songsters. Harking back to the days of old time tent Minstrel shows where a variety of acts would be seen in one evening, the album uses roots music as a springboard for a variety of other genres. Blues, country, jug band, to name just a few, are all explored here.
Then and Now is an album that takes roots music into the modern era in an interesting, and in your face manner. This is the album you always crave after a long day of work because it is an honest look at American music, both young and old. This is the genius of Northern Minnesota’s Matt Ray and Those Damn Horses.