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The Civil Wars — Between the Bars EP/Bare Bones EP (2013)

 The Civil Wars — Between the Bars EP (2013)

The Civil Wars — Between the Bars EP
Nashville acoustic duo with folk songs, country ballads, and close harmonies.
Location: Nashville, TN & Florence, Alabama
Album release: 2013
Record Label: Sensibility Music
Duration:     13:45
Tracks:
1. Sour Times (Portishead)     3:19
2 Between the Bars (Elliot Smith)     2:47
3 Bilie Jean (Michael Jackson)     4:20
4 Talking In Your Sleep (Romantics)     3:19 
Members:
Joy Williams
John Paul White
Beginnings:
Williams and White met in 2008, during a song-writing session or "writing camp" at a music studio in Nashville, Tennessee. According to Williams the idea for the band's name came as she "was driving around town looking at all the Civil War monuments." Their first recording was of a 2009 performance at Eddie's Attic in Georgia which they released as a free Internet download called Live at Eddie's Attic. Later that year, they released a digital extended-play album, called Poison & Wine, produced by Charlie Peacock, and the title song appeared on the TV show Grey's Anatomy. 
REVIEW
Written by Eric Luecking November 27th, 2013 at 11:12 am
Civil Wars release a special 10″ vinyl EP for Record Store Day’s Black Friday sale on November 29. The four-song disc, Between the Bars, feature studio recordings of cover songs, including Portishead’s “Sour Times,” Elliot Smith’s “Between the Bars,” Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean,” and the Romantics’ “Talking in Your Sleep.”
Joy Williams and John Paul White are no strangers to performing cover songs. What’s been so exciting about the songs they’ve chosen throughout their short career is the range of artists they’ve opted to embrace that don’t  fit into their rootsy image. Who could have imagined that the duo’s take on UK downtempo group Portishead’s “Sour Times” could work so well? Williams’ vocal take is beautified compared to original singer Beth Gibbon’s more dour (but still awesome) approach. There’s still a haunting air about the track when the track unleashes a fury starting with piano stabs that is further accentuated by White’s underrated singing prowess.
The four-track EP Is rounded out by a cover of Elliott Smith’s “Between The Bars,” a glowing duet where the group’s voices intertwine throughout the song, a cover of Michael Jackon’s “Billie Jean,” and a stripped down version of The Romantic’s hit classic “Talking In Your Sleep.” The latter is driven primarily by piano, although White’s guitar peeks through occasionally.
The four-track EP Is rounded out by a cover of Elliott Smith’s “Between The Bars,” a glowing duet where the group’s voices intertwine throughout the song, a cover of Michael Jackon’s “Billie Jean,” and a stripped down version of The Romantic’s hit classic “Talking In Your Sleep.” The latter is driven primarily by piano, although White’s guitar peeks through occasionally.
Fans who have followed the group’s numerous EP and official live recordings will have already heard how they attack “Billie Jean” and “Sour Times” while the Romantics and Smith covers are new territory. The good news is that the former two tracks aren’t just rehashed versions already available on other releases (the VH1 Unplugged EP, for example), giving this 10″ four very worthwhile tracks that fans old and new alike will cherish. (http://www.americansongwriter.com/)
The Civil Wars — Bare Bones EP
Duration:     20:59    
Tracks:
1. Oh Henry (Alternate Version)     3:29
2. Eavesdrop (Alternate Version)     3:51
3. Dust to Dust (Acoustic)     3:46
4. From This Valley (Acoustic)     3:29
5. The One That Got Away (Acoustic)     3:30
6. I Had Me a Girl (Acoustic)     3:34
Despite going on hiatus in November 2012, Nashville folk duo The Civil Wars have released a 6 track EP Entitled Bare Bones EP, the effort is quite true to its name, and really paints a stripped down, raw version of Joy Williams and John Paul White that fans may not have been exposed to before. After all, the EP features entirely acoustic or alternative versions of their preexisting tracks.
The album begins with an alternate version of the track “Oh Henry”, which first saw the light of day on the duo’s self titled album that dropped last August. In comparison to the original version of the song, this alternate version is very stripped down, and removes a lot of the funk that stood in the way of the band’s most marketable feature: their insane harmonies. Yes, the great songwriting and clear guitar tones are still there, but the production is much rawer and more organic. This really does a great job of highlighting just how spectacular the harmonizing really is.
After an alternate version of “Eavesdrop”, listeners will arrive at the next standout track on Bare Bones, an acoustic rendition of “Dust to Dust”. Be warned, readers, as this mellow track has been known to cause extreme haziness, relaxation, and in some cases, even introspective thought. We recommend listening to this one with some sort of warm beverage in a warm, cozy indoors environment. Really try to pay attention to the lyrics in “Dust to Dust”, as this song is a stellar example of the songwriting ability possessed by this fantastic duo.
Track number five is an acoustic take on “The One That Got Away”, which is likely to most popular Civil Wars tune outside of that one that was in The Hunger Games. Fans of the original version of the song will definitely want to check out the acoustic version, as this is likely the song that least resembles its original counterpart on Bare Bones. That is not to imply, however, that the acoustic version of “The One That Got Away” is bad by any means; if anything, it crafts a clearer, more poignant lens through which listeners can examine the core of the song.
Fortaken: http://www.onstagemagazine.com/bare-bones-civil-wars-review/
Also:
By Tony Hardy: http://consequenceofsound.net/2013/07/album-review-the-civil-wars-the-civil-wars/
Website: http://thecivilwars.com/
MySpace: https://myspace.com/thecivilwars
Twitter: https://twitter.com/thecivilwars
JOY WILLIAMS
Birth name: Joy Elizabeth Williams
Born: November 14, 1982
Origin: Santa Cruz, California, USA
Personal life:
Williams is married to Nate Yetton and gave birth to a son in June 2012
Solo:
Joy Williams, 2001 [Reunion]
By Surprise, 2002 [Reunion]
Genesis, 2005 [Reunion]
Connect Sets EP (online only), 2005 [Reunion/Sony Connect]
Every Moment: The Best of Joy Williams, 2006 [Reunion]
One of Those Days (EP), 2009 [Sensibility Music]
Charmed Life (Remixes) Digital EP, 2009 [Sensibility Music]
Songs from This/Songs from That (2 EPs), 2009 [Sensibility Music]
More Than I Asked For: Celebrating Christmas with Joy Williams EP, 2009 [Sensibility Music]
We Mapped the World EP, 2010 [Sensibility Music]
The Civil Wars:
Live at Eddie's Attic (2009) [Sensibility Music]
Poison & Wine (EP, 2009) [Sensibility Music]
Barton Hollow (2011) [Sensibility Music]
"Safe & Sound" (2012) The Hunger Games Soundtrack [Universal Republic]
The Civil Wars (2013) [Sensibility Music]
JOHN PAUL WHITE:
Birth name: John Paul White
Born: 1973
Origin: Loretto, Tennessee, United States
Personal life:
White lives in Florence, Alabama with his wife Jenny and four children.
Solo:
The Long Goodbye (2008)
The Civil Wars:
Live at Eddie's Attic (2009)
Poison & Wine EP (2009)
Barton Hollow (2011)
Unplugged On VH1 (2013)
The Civil Wars (2013)
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The Civil Wars — Between the Bars EP/Bare Bones EP (2013)
The Civil Wars — Between the Bars EP/Bare Bones EP (2013)

 

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