When Vermont quartet Saints and Liars lists their influences, a lot of them are typical for an Americana group: The Band, Waylon Jennings, and “all 3 Hank Williams.” A few, though, come a little further from left field: Motörhead. Metallica.
Though the music they make is certainly not metal – they don’t even play many instruments made of metal – you can hear the genre’s influences: high-voltage speed, raw power, and gruff hollering. Singer Jed Hughes sounds like James Hetfield at a campfire and, on songs like “Oil Slick,” the band speeds along as fast as they can smack a washboard. Just as Rodrigo y Gabriela bring their metal fandom into flamenco music, Saints and Liars headbang through bluegrass-y Americana. Call it “thrash folk.”
Saints and Liars’ self-titled debut album came out last year, but the band has just updated it with an expanded edition featuring two new tracks: “Sit and Sing” and “Drunk and Alone.” The new songs fit in seamlessly with the rest, but recording them proved a little more challenging.