MARY LEARY/SAN DIEGO ENTERTAINER: There’s an air of wildness; of something cool and sharp in the air, with Demolition String Band. The duo bristles with a restlessness that’s at the heart of some of the most exciting American roots music. It’s that sense of suddenly leaving town for no apparent reason, or on the strength of a rumor. It’s about dropping your husband’s hand at a county fair ‘cause some handsome stranger – who’s probably “trouble” — strides by; taking your breath away.
With a flexible foundation in Bluegrass and old-timey Folk, Elena Skye and Boo Reiners seem to have been born for sepia-toned melodies. “Jethro’s Lullaby,” the mandolin-drenched calling card that bookends Gracious Days, throws off a sweetly arcane scent. For me, Gracious Days could have kept to that path. But DSB is anxious to kick its lace-up boots in a variety of settings, whether the vintage Country of “Misfortune” or the Rock-laced Country of “Questioningly” (the Ramones song). “Boojo Breakaway” and “Williamsville Ramble,” offer bracing blasts of racing strings. And “Under the Weather” is a shimmering, danceable Folk-rocker. Damn, that last one’s a winner, recalling some of Dan Hicks’ joyful chutzpah. It’s a jugband tune with all the right post-’60s bells and whistles. Skye and Reiners are aided and abetted by a posse that includes Mike Santoro/acoustic and electric bass, Catherine Popper/bass fiddle and electric bass guitar, Lisa Gutkin/fiddle, and and Neal Pawley/trombone and tuba. (view the original article here)