Former front man of Minneapolis boneshakers The Rockford Mules is back with his first full solo album since 2012’s ‘The Ballad of a Winter Beard’. Following the Mules’ final record in 2010, ‘Ma, They Broke Me’, Erik Tasa’s solo record was a far mellower and introspective offering, employing acoustic melodies and haunting vocals to create a powerful and atmospheric 7 songs in just over 20 minutes. For the new album ‘Murky’, the folk balladeer has happily returned to this formula, this time under the name Mudfoot Barker.

For those who have been waiting a long 9 years for a follow up, ‘Murky’ is in fact reminiscent of the its predecessor in many ways – beautifully crafted, melodious and mysterious. The sheer beauty of the title track opens up yet another collection of late-night, whiskey-sipping acoustic folk. It’s a sound so descriptive you can almost see it – delicate tones warmly blending into one another, a voice full of warmth, stories of time gone by; all helped on by the atmospheric production of another ex-Mules man, Ryan Rud.

From the magic of ‘Whiskey Witching Hour’ to the tingling charm of ‘Between the Ditches’, the chorus of ‘My June’ to the lonely road song of ‘Long Setting Low’, ‘Murky’ is an album that illustrates a myriad of portraits within a desperately short 7 songs. While acting as something like a follow up to ‘The Ballad of Winter Beard’, it’s certainly not a conclusion. I just hope we don’t have to wait for another 9 years to get one.


Author: Craggy Collyde