Big Harp began as a low-key folk-rock band that features fuzzy bass, angular guitar riffs and lyrics that are darkly wry, ironic and sometimes apathetic. They have drawn comparisons to artists such as Nick Cave, Tom Waits, Willie Nelson, Captain Beefheart and Townes Van Zandt. Their vibe is low-key, but, that’s only because there is a consciously restrained velocity beneath.
Chris Senseney and Stefanie Drootin-Senseney are the duo behind Big Harp, after a three-year whirlwind that saw the two meet, have a baby, move halfway across the country, get married, move halfway across the country again, and have another baby. That personal chemistry permeates throughout their music.
They recorded their first album, White Hat, after one week of holing up for one week in a spare bedroom at Stephanie’s parents’ house. This is the first time the two had actually been in a band together or had performed live together. While touring this album, they garnered praise from critics and Stephanie’s bass playing was named in a Best of SXSW 2012 article.
Early in 2013, Big Harp released their second album, Chain Letters, which they really focused the music around Stephanie’s bass playing. It also found the band changing, their folk-energy exploding into more rock riffs. Aiming for a more 70’s Iggy Pop sound than the Leonard Cohen vibe of the first album, they aspire to have an album that sounds like Leonard Cohen fronting the Pixies. Again, their twisted humor shines though.
Strawberry Tongue Radio is pleased to feature You Can’t Save Them All from Chain Letters. On this track, Chris’ voice and Stephanie’s chorus behind him have that restrained and yet majestic Neil Diamond sound. Paired on top of jaggy guitars and that fuzzy bass, it’s sublime.
Learn more about this duo at the Big Harp official website.
Pick up Big Harp‘s music at iTunes.