Published Mar 19, 2010A powerful live force, Huron's dynamic debut is rooted in country tones, but stands apart because of its unique amalgamation of rock riffage and pop finesse. The Hamilton, ON band are led by distinctive songwriters Aaron Goldstein and Cam Malcolm, who each wear their influences on rolled up sleeves. Scorching guitarists, the two have an affinity for the classic, left-of-centre folk rock of the Band or the Byrds, but were clearly just as taken with the Super Friendz, Thrush Hermit and other representatives of the mid-'90s Halifax pop explosion. The choo-choo train chug of something like "King and Country" shows off their gritty exuberance, while some latter day Wilco seeps through the pedal steel-soaked, Big Pink buzz of "Chicken Wing." Beyond their pop acumen, Huron are great at stretching songs out and revelling in space and grooves. "Living and Dead" might explode with an FM radio chorus, but the build is nuanced, shimmering with sounds under urgent, everyman vocals. Blurton's stamp is all over blasting pop like "Corktown," and the partnership is a great boon for Huron, a new band with a compelling musical foundation.
What drew Huron together?
Aaron Goldstein: I first met Cam [Malcolm] when he was in a band called the Sweet Homewreckers, who played a show with my band, the Surly Young Bucks. He and I really clicked on Thrush Hermit because Clayton Park is a huge record for both of us.
Huron's diverse sound is country rock, but really heavy.
Yeah, the heavy stuff started with me, but Cam has crossed over, writing heavier parts. And the pop thing comes from him and is rubbing off on me. Cam's really into Gram Parsons and I've been playing steel guitar for a while. But I had a Sabbath and Metallica phase as a kid and, again, Clayton Park has those heavy, poppy elements that we relate to.
What did Blurton bring to the table?
Ian's just the total master of sounds. The first tune we cut was "The Biggest Dig" and when we went in to listen back to it our jaws just dropped at the sound. He's just a straight-up, no-bullshit guy who's just a fan of a good song and it worked really well. He's just music, beginning to end. (Latent)