When a band writes a tropical sounding song — complete with Hawaiian slack key guitar — and the locale they choose to sing about is Kansas, you should probably just assume they’re from Canada. The Crooked Brothers, a trio out of Winnipeg, Manitoba is a group of fine musicians with gravel in their guts and dreams of warmer, if not necessarily more exotic, places.
Lawrence, Where’s Your Knife? is the Crooked Brothers’ sophomore album, following their 2009 debut, Deathbed Pillowtalk. It gets off to a hell of a start with the Tom Waitsy “17 Horses,” and then pulls in the reins for the aforementioned “Kansas.” The lament, “Cold As You,” is gentle but biting with its great line, “As long as I can remember, there was no December that was as cold as you.” Near the end of the album, they pick up the cold theme again on “Winter’s Come.”
With all three members sharing songwriting duties and instruments, it’s not surprising that the album covers a lot of musical ground: foot stompers, gentle heartbreakers, and blue collar ballads all fit together here. Lawrence, Where’s Your Knife? comes out on September 23 on Transistor 66 Records.