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If the blur of Christmas got too much for you on the music front, you may have missed out on two additions to the 2015 Kilkenny Roots Festival before the end of the year.

Alongside the likes of Calexico (very much sold out), I’m With Her, Ryan Boldt, Kacy & Clayton and Cale Tyson, Kilkenny will be welcoming Lee Bains III & The Glory Fires and Sons Of Bill to venues in the city this May bank holiday weekend.

Lee Bains III & The Glory Fires

Lee Bains III & The Glory Fires
Lee Bains III & The Glory Fires

On the band’s latest release, Deconstructed

Consider the record’s opener, “The Company Man.” It revs up with a riff sleazy enough to clog Rod Stewart’s stomach pump as an incantation that only a Yellowhammer can truly understand is bellowed and then screamed. Before you know it, the joint is hotter than a Birmingham soaking pit while you, the listener, are reminded, lest you forget, don’t ever trust the company man.

No shit.

Dereconstructed is a careening, road raging, all night party of a record. Informed by a distinctly southern hoodoo, it is a master class in authentic Gulf Coast choogle. Having cut his teeth in the Dexateens, Lee Bains lll has been properly schooled in how to throw down, so much so that even his hyper literate musings are no match for the blown out distortion that gives this record its blistering urgency.

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Sons Of Bill

Sons Of Bill
Sons Of Bill

It’s easy to say that Sons of Bill can sound more like Townes Van Zandt or early R.E.M. depending on the track, even moving into their own brand of down-home psychedelia that American Songwriter described as a “countrified Pink Floyd.” But the real achievement of Love and Logic is the songwriting, the Wilson brothers’ ability to craft literate and deeply introspective lyrics while still managing to deliver it all as a rock and roll band. It’s a soul-searcher’s soundtrack for an over-stimulated age. A roots rock album that stands out in 2014.

Sons of Bill became more than Charlottesville’s best kept secret with the release of the Sirens LP, a brash rock and roll record, which debuted on the Billboard top 200 and #12 on the Heatseekers chart in 2012. The band toured extensively on both sides of the Atlantic for a year and a half and gained some notoriety for their fiery live performances and road dog work ethic. But Love and Logic certainly marks a turning point for the band– a more sober, reflective, version of themselves– the sound of a band coming into its own.

Read more here.

For news on and music from the 2015 Kilkenny Roots Festival, check out our dedicated Roots Festival section here.