project to one of New York City’s most unique live bands. Bluegrass purists might shake a
finger when lead singer and principal songwriter Mike Savino plugs his 5-string banjo
into a series of stomp boxes and cranks up his amplifier but for fans, the results are
strinkingly fresh and original. The band, which also features guitarist Kyle Sanna,
bassist Benjamin Campbell, and eccentric percussionist Mathias Kunzli, has been honing it’s
live chops performing at NYC’s Highline Ballroom, The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.,
and most recently opening for jam band Donna the Buffalo.
Their self-titled debut album was released in the summer of 2009 and widely received by
college radio stations all throughout North America making a couple of appearances on the
CMJ top 200 charts. Using a similar formula to fellow New Yorkers Vampire Weekend and
Dirty Projectors, Tall Tall Trees mix American folk and rock with elements of Brazilian and
African music, providing polyrhythmic support to Savino’s melodically and lyrically twisted
tunes. Live, the band is energetic and masterful, reflecting years spent collaborating with a
diverse roster of artists including Moby, Yo Yo Ma, and Vieux Farka Toure. “We’re all
ex-jazz heads and world music junkies,” says Savino. “I became obsessed with music
from Pernambuco, Brazil and that has become a big part of my musical landscape.”
What exactly does that mean for the listener? Two words: triangle solo.
“It’s Impossible not to smile at their folk-driven pop tunes”
“A perfect storm of catchy songwriting”
“The Allman Brothers meet the Muppets”
Edited by mikesavino on 22 Jun 2010, 00:16
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