One for the Salamanders
This is the debut album from Asheville, NC's finest stankgrass conglomerate. Mixing Moog effects with bluegrass backbeats, the sound of Brushfire Stankgrass is instantly unique. The Asheville group was recently voted into The Mountain Xpress' best of WNC for the second year running, tying with The Steep Canyon Rangers & Steve Martin in the bluegrass/oldtime category. While the music is certainly not straight bluegrass, the sound is undeniably derived from mountain musical traditions. The past few years have been exciting for Brushfire with shows at Downtown After 5, the Music City Brewer's Festival, Brewgrass, The Mountain Sports Festival, The Orange Peel, French Broad River Festival, headlining spots at the Asheville Winter Warmer Beerfest and the Asheville Downtown 4th of July celebration to name a few. Their eclectically entertaining live performances have earned the band a loyal following. This "Stankgrass" sound has landed the group three sessions in western North Carolina's famed WNCW Studio B over the past two years and regular airplay on independent stations nationwide. Their live concerts, recorded in stunning multi-track clarity, are downloaded from archive.org at a rate of over two hundred downloads per week to listeners all over the world. Their new album, "One for the Salamanders," was released July 23, 2010. The remarkable chemistry and live experimentation in the music of Brushfire Stankgrass begins with it's founding members, Ben & Will Saylor. The brothers began playing music in the Suzuki method at the age of three and picked up the banjo and guitar at 10 & 12, respectively. They still maintain their bluegrass chops today, but have added some Moog analog effects and "trance-mountain dub" rhythms to create a style which has moved beyond the traditional into truly uncharted territory; they call it Stankgrass. Along the way the brothers Saylor have found two outstanding musicians to round out the group. Bassist Bryan White hails from the land of Merlefest (Wilkesboro, NC), and is a veteran composer and performer on upright and electric basses. Drumming virtuoso Micah Thomas slides into the newgrass-style seamlessly, having absorbed the traditional music of his native West Virginia. Both Bryan and Micah are accomplished musicians in their own right, and they maintain a busy schedule playing music full-time with multiple groups. "My engine runs on techno music. Imagination is how I steer" -Banjo in my Spaceship.