When you grow up in a remote region of Saskatchewan, Canada, where the nearest record store is a five-hour drive, an imagination comes in handy. That’s how cousins Kacy Anderson and Clayton Linthicum – aka Kacy & Clayton – coped with life in the Wood Mountain Uplands, where rolling hills outnumbered neighbors and small-town subversion hid in the verdant sheen. And, on their last LP Strange Country, they told tales of vengeful, murderous women, unwanted babies and mysterious spirits, all housed in their breed of both eerie and ethereal folk, unique enough to catch the interest of Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, who produced their forthcoming album The Siren’s Song. Watch the exclusive premiere of the video for their first single, “The Light of Day,” above.
With production from Tweedy, “The Light of Day” finds the duo morphing into full-band territory, giving their sound a less pastoral, more psychedelic sheen along the lines of Gram Parson’s Grievous Angel, Buffalo Springfield or Sir Douglas Quintet if Linda Perhacs was at the wheel, with Anderson’s voice leaping from a sweet mountain warble to full-on Grace Slick belt. The video tells the tale of a scorned housewife and the dirty secrets hidden in suburbia, buried behind blue skies and bluer eye shadow.
Tweedy spotted Kacy and Clayton performing at Pickathon, and ended up making the album this past January at the Loft in Chicago, Wilco’s studio that has also given rise to LP’s from Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks, Andrew Bird, Mavis Staples and many more. The duo recorded The Siren’s Song live on the floor, and favored authenticity over perfection: mistakes seep through as character markings, not blemishes.
“[Tweedy] knows so much about recording, music and gear that it’s overwhelming, but we have a lot in common with him in regards to our tastes of production and albums from the Sixties and Seventies,” says Anderson. “It’s pretty inspirational to think that he wakes up every morning and works to advance the folk-country-rock medium constantly, considering he’s already released dozens of great albums. This was very motivating for us recording this album, seeing this dedication in motion.”
Kacy & Clayton will support Wilco for a string of dates this summer, beginning with a show last night in Michigan. The Siren’s Song will be available August 18th via New West.