Country soul isn’t exactly the hot sound of the moment, but North Carolina’s Hiss Golden Messenger has released one of the year’s best records in that genre—and probably one of the year’s best indie-rock records, period. Lateness of Dancers, which came out this month on Merge Records, combines a certain ear-softening AM rock with broad strokes of folk and church music. Lead songwriter M.C. Taylor has been at it for years, starting with Country Hai East Cotton in 2008—and before that, in San Francisco’s Court & Spark and hardcore band Ex-Ignota. His songs have gone from relatively spare and scrappy to fully realized and rich, embodied by gorgeous numbers like “Mahogany Dread.”
Last night Taylor returned to DC9 with a full band, a lineup that included Mountain Man member Alexandra Sauser-Monnig, who also opened the show. Here’s what Bandwidth saw through its lens.
Hiss Golden Messenger: