Shakey Graves: “House Of Winston”

Photo by Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon

Every month we turn the spotlight on a new release from a Texas artist with a series of weekly features that give you a sneak peek at the new music and some insight into the artist behind it. Find the full Artist of the Month feature rundown here.

From Bandcamp self-releases to a major label and a late-night TV performance: Austin’s Shakey Graves won’t be just a local concern for much longer. Alejandro Rose-Garcia grew up in Austin and started playing as Shakey Graves about four years ago, first gaining exposure as a one-man-band. But the suitcase-drum and percussive guitar playing style didn’t disguise the fact that Rose-Garcia could write songs as well as he could perform them. He slowly built up his reputation as a dynamic live artist, playing what feels like every club around town, big or small.

With a steady buzz growing, Rose-Garcia thought bigger for his second album–more instruments, more influences, even a record label. And The War Came delivers on the promise, but that DIY intimacy remains. Rose-Garcia largely recorded the album in his Austin home, matching his lo-fi roots with a more atmospheric sound. Denver’s Esme Patterson fleshes out the harmonies on many of the songs, and in the live setting, Shakey Graves has grown into a full-blown country-rock band. On “House Of Winston,” Rose-Garcia brings his past and future together, blending his blues and folk influences with an ear for a pop melody.

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