Elkington Mohs – Skyline Dancer (Independent)
Elkington Mohs is Brian Elkington and Dan Mohs, who first met as students at Hamline University, Saint Paul, Minnesota, played together for a decade or so and then went their separate ways. Elkington ended up in Sydney, Australia, the unlikely city where the duo got back together in 2007 and recorded “Winter Wine”. Late 2012 saw the release of a new collection “Skyline Dancer”, which brings us to the present.
Together they share a great deal of history, whether it’s together or apart, and both sides are reflected in the music they’re presently making. The new record is beautifully produced; it feels warm, natural and organic, and will remind many listeners of the folk music produced in Greenwich Village in the early ‘60s, and subsequently the rest of North America and Europe. They take it in turn to sing lead.
With two singers-songwriters there’s always a chance that a recording can sound disjointed, but not so here. They share an approach to their craft and their songs happily co-habit. There’s no shortage of highlights: “Not the End of the World” is gentle, nostalgic storytelling at its best with a little harmonica adding extra depth. “Man from Crooked Lake” adds a ‘70s West Coast, country vibe, and the electric guitar detail is nigh on sublime, and the title track is simply magnificent. The vocals are perfect, and I’m reminded of the classic recordings of Jackson C. Frank.