by Dan Ferguson
For all intents and purposes, Middle Brother was officially born at an unannounced gig during the 2010 edition of SXSW. Formed by the frontmen of Dawes, Delta Spirit and Deer Tick (John McCaughey), the threesome had been noodling together in the year before. With its self-titled debut, Middle Brother takes the next step. On it the like-minded trio channels the rootsy doings of their individual bands into an alt country blend that is refreshingly loose and spirited and on which they wear the Petty/Young/Springsteen influences on their respective sleeves. Visit www.partisanrecords.com.
Middle Brother, Deer Tick, and Dawes appear at Lupo's Heartbreak Hotel on Friday, March 4.
With 1993 release The Calm Comes After for esteemed Hoboken-based indie Bar/None Records, singer/songwriter Kate Jacobs became a critics darling wrapping a sweet and wispy soprano around quirky vignettes with accompaniment on the cusps of pop and twang. Several releases followed over the next decade, but as often happens life intervenes and Jacobs went into mom mode. Seven years after her last album, Jacobs reemerges with Home Game. It draws largely on the "sabbatical" with Jacobs displaying all the charm that first turned heads back in '93. Visit www.katejacobsmusic.com.
(Dan Ferguson is a free-lance music writer and host of The Boudin Barndance, broadcast Thursday nights from 6 - 9 pm on WRIU-FM 90.3. He lives in Peace Dale and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.)