Dead Horses / Kate Rhudy
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At 15, Dead Horses frontwoman Sarah Vos’s world turned upside down. Raised in a strict, fundamentalist home, Vos lost everything when she and her family were expelled from the rural Wisconsin church where her father had long served as pastor. What happened next is the story of Dead Horses’ stunning new album, My Mother the Moon, a record of trauma and triumph, despair and hope.
Blending elements of traditional roots with contemporary indie folk, the album is both familiar and unexpected. It is unflinchingly honest in its portrayal of modern American life yet optimistic in its faith in brighter days to come. Earthy and organic, Vos’s songs often reveal themselves to be exercises in outreach; she writes not only to find meaning in the struggles she has endured, but also to embrace kindred souls on their journeys of self-discovery. As much as the album is a reckoning with everything she witnessed growing up (mental illness, poverty, addiction, and violence), it’s also an effort to shape the future, to build a community based around love, art, and acceptance.
My Mother the Moon is the third album from Dead Horses. It follows their acclaimed 2016 release, Cartoon Moon. That record prompted the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel to declare Dead Horses a “band to watch” and earned them honors for best album, best Americana/bluegrass artist, and best female vocalist at the 2017 Wisconsin Area Music Industry Awards.
Kate Rhudy is a singer-songwriter based in Raleigh, North Carolina. Her debut album, Rock N’ Roll Ain’t for Me, reinterprets well-worn folk with a new vibrancy. Rhudy, who grew up playing classical violin and fiddlers' conventions, brought her collection of writings into the studio alongside producer Andrew Marlin of Mandolin Orange.
See the video for “Long Way Down” by Dead Horses: