The beginnings of The Dead South, four friends who wanted to make music together, were still heavily influenced by grunge. Luckily, the quartet realized quite quickly after forming that they should take a different path. They threw aside the drums and electronic instruments and made the bold decision to form a bluegrass band. For more than a decade they have been showing how successful this step has been.
They play both surprisingly punky original compositions and unique interpretations of country classics. Most recently they released two EPs entitled "Easy Listening for Jerks, Pt. 1 + 2", on which they presented their favorite songs in a new guise. The first part of the EPs is dedicated to traditional pieces, while the second part interprets songs by System of a Down, The Doors and The Misfits in a bluegrass style.
A good example of this is "Keep On The Sunny Side". Here not only the mood is changed from a happy major to a deeper minor, but also the interpretation of the song. Instead of the hopeful song suggesting that sunshine always comes after dark times, the Canadians' focus is clearly on the darker side of the soul. The band aptly describes itself as the meeting of the Carter Family and the Addams Family.
The band members, singer and guitarist Nate Hilts, mandolin player Scott Pringle, cellist and piper Danny Kenyon and banjo player Colton Crawford, were inspired by role models like Hank Williams III and created something excitingly new from an old and traditional genre. Punk and cowboy sounds merge here. Their music is refreshing and will be heard live again next June when The Dead South come to Berlin again.