Mipso releases "Dark Holler Pop"

Robust Records is proud to announce that MIPSO releases their second album, Dark Holler Pop on October 26, 2013. Listen and share the standout song “Louise” here: https://soundcloud.com/mipsomusic/louise

Watch the video for “Carolina Calling” which was filmed during the recording the album at The Rubber Room studio in Chapel Hill, NC at http://youtu.be/mQ6ov61atsQ

The renegade traditionalists of Mipso — Joseph Terrell on guitar, Jacob Sharp on mandolin, and Wood Robinson on upright bass — are doing their part to take three-part harmony and Appalachian influences into new territory. The three North Carolina songwriters wandered off the path blazed by Earl Scruggs and Doc Watson to find a new clearing for their southern string band sound.

In the process, they’ve kicked up a fuss. INDY Week heralded the band’s role in the reemergence of southern roots music, crediting Mipso with “expanding the vocabulary of common touchstones” for bluegrass. NPR station WUNC hosted live previews of Dark Holler Pop months before its release. And all over the southeast, Mipso has been busy playing raucously fun live shows that veer from up-tempo original melodies to madcap acoustic covers of Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder. The group puts all the energy of a college club show into a form of music that predates clubs. And most colleges.

Dark Holler Pop is produced by Andrew Marlin of Mandolin Orange at the Rubber Room in Chapel Hill. Other guest musicians include Phil Cook (Megafaun, the Shouting Matches), Chandler Holt and John Teer (Chatham County Line), Emily Frantz (Mandolin Orange), Bobby Britt (Town Mountain), and Chris Roszell (Big Fat Gap). Mipso will join other North Carolina luminaries on stage to support the album, such as four-time Grammy winner David Holt, as well as the recently Grammy-honored Steep Canyon Rangers. While making waves across their home state, it is clear Mipso will be keeping good company.

Joseph Terrell explains the story behind the standout song, “Louise,” “We recorded it with two of our local heroes: Andrew Marlin and Emily Frantz of Mandolin Orange. We recorded the track mostly live, in different booths in the Rubber Room, where we all had eye contact. We really got into the groove of the song. Andrew's banjo part added an awesome bounce, and Emily's fiddle part soared above it in such a groovy, spooky way. When we finished recording, we all looked at each other and Andrew said, with a grin, ‘whew, that's some dark holler pop!’ We all laughed, and then thought that would make a great title for the album.”

The idea for Mipso arose out of freshman year daydreaming at University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.  After some band-making delays — Jacob took a year off to study winemaking in New Zealand, Joseph detoured to Argentina for Tango guitar lessons, Wood earned his chops in the Carolina jazz department — Mipso quickly went from idle picking to a campus staple. By junior year, UNC’s Chancellor was a regular guest on keyboard. By graduation, Mipso sold out Carrboro, NC’s legendary Cat’s Cradle — four times.

Now, after a whirlwind tour through Japan’s bustling bluegrass scene during the summer of 2013 and a host of sold-out shows across the Southeast, Jacob, Joseph and Wood are making the happy adjustment from local favorites to global emissaries for a decidedly new sound. More tour dates will be announced shortly.


THU OCT 3    Concord, NC @ Davis Theatre

FRI OCT 4      Durham, NC @ Center Stage at American Tobacco, Durham (WUNC Back Porch Music Series; outdoors in front of DPAC; 6:00-9:00pm; Mipso plays 6:00-6:50pm; free)

SAT OCT 12   Pittsboro, NC @ Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival (Grove Stage; 2:30pm)

FRI OCT 25    Saxaphaw, NC @ Haw River Ballroom (Album Release Show)

SAT NOV 2     Asheville, NC @ Isis Restaurant and Music Hall

FRI NOV 8      Greensboro, NC @ Carolina Theatre w/ David Holt

SAT NOV 9     Charlotte, NC @ Neighborhood Theatre w/ David Holt

FRI NOV 15    Carrboro, NC @ Cat's Cradle (opening for Steep Canyon Rangers)

SAT NOV 16   Boone, NC @ Legends

SAT NOV 23   Raleigh, NC @ Raleigh Little Theatre w/ David Holt

SAT NOV 30   Lexington, NC @ Smith Civic Center (NC Music and Arts Festival)

FRI DEC 13    Fountain, NC @ Fountain General Store

THU DEC 19  Morganton, NC @ CoMMA (Benefit for Casting for Hope and The Hope Chest)


Caleb Caudle Releases "Tobacco Town"

The branches became lonesome as the blackbirds flew, the feathers fell down on this Tobacco Town for you,” sings Caleb Caudle on the title track of his fifth album out now. Releasing five records over the past five years, it’s the consistent strength of his songwriting that has snagged attention from sources such as Blurt Magazine noting, “…jaw-droppingly fine songs steeped in classic Earle, Ely, Clark, McMurtry and Van Zandt.”

Caudle has previously recorded both solo and with a band, as well as collaborating with Ryan Monroe from Band of Horses, and with noted producer Neilson Hubbard. Caudle now turns to the sweet spot of sparse roots-rock arrangements on Tobacco Town. With his North Carolina home as the backdrop, he aptly punctuates his songs with the harmonies and fiddle of Caitlin Cary (Small Ponds/Whiskeytown) and singer-songwriter Haley Dreis, as well with full band, and one-take recordings of just Caudle’s voice and guitar. Listen to the album here.

Caudle turns his pen to the shaky sides of life and relationship woes, “you know, the ones where you don’t want to stay, but don’t want to leave,” he shares. He brought Cary in for “Midnight Beauty,” which could be the album’s linchpin, with “Yes, You’re a Midnight Beauty But then again, aren’t we all?

“Caitlin worked out the accompaniment on the fly and had the inherent feel that the song needed to be tongue-in-cheek, you know ‘you’re really great, but so are a lot of people and there’s a lot of fish in the sea.’”

In contrast “Little Reminders” was written right after meeting “the right person” – “And little reminders of you in the pocket of my jeans, your hair on the pillow, the vinyl still out of the sleeves.”

Elsewhere, “Hesitate” is full of stomps, whistles and rolling banjos with “Call on me even if you think we’ve said it all before though our words won’t change a thing, I still wanna hear even more, Because I don’t hesitate too much now.”

Tobacco Town includes Caleb Caudle (vocals, acoustic guitar, harmonica), Sam Kossler (guitar, banjo, bass, Dobro, pedal steel, keys, vocals), Chris Ankelien (drums), Caitlin Cary (violin, vocals on “Midnight Beauty” and “Blue or Gray”), Haley Dreis (violin, vocals on “Little Reminders” and “Anne Marie”). All songs were written by Caleb Caudle, with “Anne Marie” and “Hesitate” co-written by Sam Kossler who also recorded and produced the album.

Caudle, who has toured with Dawes, Jason Isbell, The Felice Brothers and Lucero, is touring heavily throughout the end of the year as well as in 2013.