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The Doc Marshalls’ front man, Nick Beaudoing, recently landed in Nashville, TN armed with an album that still reeks of Brooklyn, his former home. Whereas previous releases evoked a humid musical landscape along the Texas-Louisiana border, their upcoming CD, “Look Out, Compadre,” sheds the honky-tonk and Cajun two-steps in favor of crooked, shimmering folk and lush, rural melodies. Even hardcore country boys are unable keep the city at bay forever.
This hard left turn comes on the heels of years of preaching roots music in indie rock venues, where country flavors are seldom heard. Since 2001, Brooklyn’s the Doc Marshalls have forged a reputation for wildly energetic live shows. Whether performing gritty honky-tonk, original Americana, or traditional Cajun two-steps played at break-neck speeds, these city troubadours have long sought to make converts of even the most country-shy souls.
Their debut album, “No Kind of Life” (2005), was warmly received by roots radio, spending over a month in the Top 40 of the Americana Music Association Radio Chart. Their 2008 CD, “Honest for Once,” surpassed this feat, making a rapid ascent to #19 and earning spots on “Best of” lists for the year, including the Americana Music Association and Pop Matters.com, among others.