Jump to Content

Welcome! You’re browsing the No Depression Archives

No Depression has been the foremost journalistic authority on roots music for well over a decade, publishing 75 issues from 1995 to 2008. No Depression ceased publishing magazines in 2008 and took to the web. We have made the contents of those issues accessible online via this extensive archive and also feature a robust community website with blogs, photos, videos, music, news, discussion and more.

Close This

Waxed - Record Review from Issue #35 Sept-Oct 2001

16 Horsepower

Hoarse (Checkered Past)

By now, it’s neither a novelty nor an understatement to compare gothic hillbilly foursome 16 Horsepower to Flannery O’Connor, with whom they share a love of gloomy portentousness, a flair for the grotesque, and a fondness for obscure Biblical analogies. If the aforementioned qualities don’t sound like a whole lot of fun, you’d be well advised to avoid Hoarse.

Recorded live in 1998 in Denver (where leader David Eugene Edwards is from) and Paris (where they’re adored), Hoarse has a solid sonic quality and a wise track selection. The songs are altered little from their studio versions, with the notable exception of a revamped, slowed-down “Horse Head” and a bluegrass-tinged “Black Lung”. “South Pennsylvania Waltz” and “Black Soul Choir” are both tightly contained and gorgeous, “Brimstone Rock” is typically fervent, and the group maintains its usual aura of murky dread throughout.

That 16 Horsepower remain essentially unaltered from their doomsaying, early ’90s selves is both a credit to their consistency and a bit problematic. Maybe that’s one reason why they try to enliven the proceedings with three equally effective covers: an earnest version of Joy Division’s “Day Of The Lords”, an uncharacteristically vigorous reworking of Gun Club’s swampy “Fire Spirit”, and a slowed-down “Bad Moon Rising”. The last is an obvious choice — in three verses, John Fogerty does everything 16 Horsepower has been trying to do for eight years.

Enjoy the ND archives? Consider making a donation with PayPal or send a check to:
No Depression, 460 Bush St., San Francisco, CA 94108

Discuss

Did you enjoy this article? Start a discussion about it, or find out what others are saying in the No Depression Community forum.

Join the Discussion »

Find out what's going on in roots music. Share concert photos and videos, learn about new artists, blog about the music you love.

Join the No Depression Community »

Originally Featured in Issue #35 Sept-Oct 2001

Buy our history before it’s gone!

Each issue is artfully designed and packed full of great photos that you don‘t get online. Visit the No Depression store to own a piece of history.

Visit the No Depression Store »


From the Blogs

  • No Depression Is Getting a Facelift: A Note About What's Around the Bend
    Ever since we announced that No Depression had been acquired by FreshGrass back in March, we’ve heard from many of you with questions, concerns, and ideas about the future of this website and the community that gathers here. We created a forum topic at that time so we could organize these comments and refer to them frequently, which we have done as we’ve dev […]
  • Freight Train Boogie Show #263 featuring The Duhks, Seth Walker, Jacob Thomas Jr, Amy Lavere and The Felice Brothers
    FTB Show #263 features the new album by The Duhks called Beyond the Blue. Also new music from Jacob Thomas Jr, Amy Lavere and The Felice Brothers.  Here's the direct link to listen now! Show #263… […]
  • Jeff Crosby & The Refugees - All Nighter (Album Review)
    “Stop Runnin,” the first track, launches in with a very Tom-Petty-esque guitar part. Shortly after, Crosby’s gruff vocal hits it and I am listening. You got me, Jeff. Full band, rock and roll. Its good. The second track has a little bit of a Swinging Steaks feel to me, with the lead line of the electric guitar. I like the Steaks, this again, is good and I am […]
  • Eric Clapton - Unplugged, 2CD+DVD (Album Review)
    Here’s a slightly unusual candidate for reissue: Eric Clapton‘s 1992 Unplugged album. To my knowledge, this massively commercially successful album has never gone out of print, which begs the question: why reissue it? To be fair, this 2014 reissue does include some bonus material. But first, let’s take a look at the original… […]
  • Getting to Know Jesse Terry -- Falcon Ridge Emerging Artist
    I first got to hear Jesse Terry at NERFA (North East Regional Folk Alliance) two years ago.  I was captivated by his songs and he had such a nice, easy rapport with his audience that it was impossible to ignore his presence at a conference full of hundreds of other singer-songwriters. One listen wasn’t enough. Two listens wasn’t enough. You get the… […]
  • Getting to Know Ashley Sofia -- Falcon Ridge Emerging Artist
    Have you ever had the feeling that a musician may have traveled through space and time during a recording project?  Music critics and fans are hailing Ashley Sofia as a 21st century reincarnation of the Laurel Canyon folk-rock sound  on the early 1970s. Ashley’s songwriting and captivating voice make for a great combination; she’s definitely worth a… […]

Shop Amazon by clicking through this logo to support NoDepression.com. We get a percentage of every purchase you make!


Subscribe To the No Depression Newsletter

Subscribe to the No Depression Newsletter