Described by BBC Radio 2’s Bob Harris as “chaotic – but wonderful”, Surrey-based band Two Fingers Of Firewater have recently made hundreds of new friends across the UK on their recent ‘review-style’ tour with US slide guitar legend Al Perkins, San Franciscan singer Brigitte Demeyer and Chris Donahue and Brady Blade, the bass and drums combo behind Emmylou Harris’ Spyboy project.
Much of the set consisted of reworkings of classic early Seventies songs by The Byrds, Gram Parsons and the Flying Burrito Brothers, for who Al Perkins provided pedal steel guitar on their original recordings. From “Take Me Back To The Country”, a tune written by Perkins, who said at the time “this country rock thing will never work” to classic Parsons/Harris duets such as “Love Hurts” and “That’s All It Took”. TFOF evoked the spirit of the Californian pre-Eagles country rock movement.
In their own original song set they show how they are revising the sound for modern audiences for whom the names of the original artists mean little or nothing. Using strong melody lines, meaningful lyrics and a high standard of musicianship, the band vary their instrumental line-up by using pedal steel guitar, mandolin, accordion and synthesiser to augment their guitar, bass, drums line-up. The distinctive country twang is provided by acoustic guitars and Telecasters, but the music never slips into C&W territory. Lyrically they are as likely to sing about the South Bank Girl who “walks by with a pen in her hair” as they are to “count the grains of sand and count the rain” along the Endless Highway “back to you again”.
With work complete on their own farm-based recording and rehearsal studio, the band are looking to augment the songs on their debut CD, released in May 2008, with a new set that will play to festival audiences throughout the summer of 2009. In the autumn two UK tours are being lined and a US expedition is being mooted for 2010.
For more information visit the band's MySpace page