Horse's Mouth and The DuPont Brothers perform Saturday
BENNINGTON —Two Vermont native indie-folk bands will play at a special fall concert hosted by the Vermont Arts Exchange and the Bennington College Activity Council on Saturday.
The show is at the Masonic Hall on Main Street. Doors open at 7 p.m.
Horse's Mouth was a product of friends meeting at Bennington College in 2005. It's comprised of Tavo Carbone from Brooklyn on voice, guitar and piano, Heather Sommerlad on violin and voice, Matt Scott on bass and voice, Michael Chinworth on piano, accordion and voice, JJ Beck on drums, piano, accordion and glockenspiel and Sam Clement on guitar and voice.
Since its inception, Horse's Mouth has performed songs Carbone has written, however they've transformed and been harmonically adopted by other band members. Carbone said arrangements are created to cater to each voice.
Carbone said the only changes that occurred over 10 years have been each band member becoming more creative, more confident and more experienced on their instrument as well as new ones.
"Our overall sound over the years has become looser as a band; by that I mean less frantic, more exact. All of us have undergone changes in our ears and lives; as people and musicians," he said. "[We have] ventured beyond our 'comfort zones' as artists and worked with people/projects that've informed us of new dialects we otherwise wouldn't have been exposed to. I believe this trickles into what knowledge and elder perspectives we can now bring to our music; a precision that's more cohered. Less youth-ridden, over eager, and generally hydrocephalic by nature."
Carbone and the rest of the band played from 2005 to 2007, but added that it wasn't until 2008 when they all individually moved to New York City that they really established Horse's Mouth.
Three alum or 'secret horses' — as Carbone referred to them — John Eagle on french horn, Trevor Wilson on accordion, harp and voice and Adele Mori on cello were also involved in performing and recording.
"They're key figures in our lives and musical maturation. We all met at Bennington College and cultivated profound friendships through music (and vice versa)," he added.
Horse's Mouth shares similar musical influences including Ravel, Michael Hurley, Chet Atkins, Lord Buckley, Frank Zappa, Charlie Christian, Lord Buckley, Bud Powell, Roy Buchanan, Danny Gatton, T-Bone Walker, Muddy Waters, The Beatles and many more.
Opening up for Horse's Mouth is the indie-folk-americana duo, The DuPont Brothers, more often found performing in Burlington. Zack and Sam DuPont have performed at festivals such as SXSW in Texas and Grand Point North in Burlington as well as touring throughout the Northeast, Mid Atlantic, South and Midwest since kicking off their career in 2013.
Their latest album "A Riddle for You" makes everything in the world feel alright with their slow, calming guitar strumming and harmonizing voices. Their other album was released last year, called, "Heavy as Lead."
Zack DuPont had a solo gig before his brother decided to move back from Arizona and join him. They played together at a show and decided to go forward as a duo.
They book roughly 200 shows per year. Zack DuPont takes care of the logistics of scheduling shows, but they both write songs and respect each other's creative process.
"We write separately and arrange parts together," Sam DuPont said. "That was a pretty smooth thing and what drew us to play together. We both admired each other's songs."
"Now it's really cool because we both write these songs and respect the process of song writing," Zack DuPont said. "It's a channeled thing rather than an academic thing. The initial inspiration comes from the feeling and you live in that feeling. The academic portion comes in the refinement phrase, analyzing cords, etc. It's the initial creative blast of the creation of the tunes. It's very respective and sacred and we come together after the fact."
The brothers are five years apart and played guitar separately growing up. Sam DuPont noted that his brother's experience helped him ease into the profession. He had to learn what it takes to build a band and said, "It's more than just showing up and playing."
Prior to touring, Sam DuPont lived in Arizona doing social work. He does it on the side back in Vermont now, but dedicates a majority of his time to the band, just as his brother does. They vouched that it's a full-time job and the process of growing a band isn't the same as it was before their time.
"It takes everything you got," Sam DuPont said. "We play with a lot of lifetime musicians in the professional capacity. It's in a different place than it ever has been in terms of what a band looks like. It's a full time thing."
"I really value the fact that I was able to bring in these relationships (booking shows) and now they're even deeper and deeper," Zack DuPont said. "In the first five years it takes that long before you throw in the towel or keep going. It's totally full time and people ask us all the time if we're full time and we always say yes that's the only way it works."
The brothers plan to start working on a new album at the end of November and finally make use of the plethora of unrecorded songs they wrote.
Daniel Bishop will join the duo on upright bass on Saturday.
Tickets for the show cost $10 for general public and $5 for students at the door only.
— Contact Makayla-Courtney McGeeney at 802-490-6471.
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