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Style: Country-tinged Americana; compare to Bill Mallonee, Bob Dylan

Top tracks: "We Are Beggars," "Lisa," "Sometimes You Stand"

"Come join me out on the porch / Read me a psalm or two / I got the chords, if you got words, baby we can sing." So begins this gem of an album from Memphis-bred brothers Ben and Scott Cunningham, aka The Olive Tree, who invite you to hang out on the porch and listen to their stories, as they describe it, of "revelation, romance, beauty, idols, motorcycles, feasts, famine, highways, friends, sin, pride, redemption, steel guitars, work, lack of work, water, faith, doubt, and faith." Their country-fied acoustic folk is reminiscent of Bill Mallonee—and surprise, they've done a few shows with the wily veteran. Here they are singing "Lisa," with Mallonee accompanying on harmonica.

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November 2012

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