Photo by Rachel Briggs
For the past five years, frontman Matthew Houck and his Brooklyn-based band have overwhelmed audiences with gritty songs about cocaine, mermaids and wolves, and took the next obvious step with 2009's To Willie, a collection of Willie Nelson covers. In all cases, Houck's stage presence is as complex and twisted as his curly beard, and few singers can out-Will-Oldham Will Oldham when it comes to a perfect, fractured vocal.
Expect to hear "It's Hard to be Humble (When You're From Alabama)," the first track released from Phosphorescent's forthcoming Here's to Taking it Easy -- now streaming over at Pitchfork. For further proof, watch this video of "A Picture of Our Torn-Up Praise":