M&T Best Songs of 2017

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M&T Best Albums of 2017

The moment you've all been waiting for...our favorite albums of 2017. We've compiled a list of the 40 best albums of the year and highlighted a Read More

January 2018 Spotify Playlist of the Month

Welcome to 2018. Hopefully we never hear the words 'bomb cyclone' ever again after this far-from-temperate January day here in NYC. To keep you Read More

Newport Folk Festival Spotlight

Newport Folk Festival Spotlight: Blind Pilot

Posted on by Eric in Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment

One act that we have been especially looking forward to seeing at this year’s Newport Folk Festival is Portland’s Blind Pilot. We fell in love with We Are The Tide and the band has been making some major moves since we first featured them last year. In January they played Letterman, followed by a headlining tour, and bookings for the 2012 editions of Lollapalooza, Sasquatch, and Bonnaroo. We knew that it was only a matter of time before they were booked for Newport as their sound is comparable to various other Newport favorites such as The Head and the Heart and Fleet Foxes.

I would go on about how catchy and beautifully crafted each song from Blind Pilot is, but I think that Caroline summed it up perfectly in her review from last year-

“But while my infatuation for Blind Pilot’s pop-folk was fast to develop, a furious and fiery affair it’s not.  So let’s put it this way: if the Flaming Lips are that unpredictable hipster you could never tie down, and Eddie Vedder is the rugged and coarse adventurer, then Blind Pilot is kind of like your spouse 20 years into marriage.  Neither We are the Tide or their 2008 album Three Rounds and a Sound throw curveballs; it’s smooth sailing. But the band, with its album stacked with catchy tune after catchy tune, has proved to me that maybe reliability’s not such a bad thing after all.  So for better or for worse, settle in and give a listen to Blind Pilot’s We Are the Tide.”


Newport Folk Festival Spotlight: Alabama Shakes

Posted on by doucebox in Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment

I was given the wonderful opportunity to feature the Alabama Shakes in our NFF spotlight series. Led by frontwoman, Brittany Howard, the Shakes have exploded onto the music scene over the last year, doing multiple appearances on late night TV, being named one of MTV’s 11 bands to watch in 2012, along with releasing their first full length album, Boys & Girls.  So, if this is the first you’re hearing of the Alabama Shakes it means two things to me: 1. You’ve been living under a rock this last year and 2. You don’t subscribe to Maimed & Tamed’s monthly Spotify playlist…In all seriousness, Alabama Shakes is the perfect blend of Americana, blues rock, and soul that will make your parents forget the last 4 decades of music ever happened (except the ’80s, no matter how hard you try, you can never forget the ’80s).  Before, and while they were working on their original material, they were known to play Led Zeppelin, James Brown, and Otis Redding cover songs, which explains the vintage sound they created for themselves.

I’m extremely anxious to see Alabama Shakes at The Fort this summer for multiple reasons. One of them being their album, Boys & Girls, which seems like it will translate very well live (I think Eric can attest to that in his SXSW review). It has a great mixture of songs where they can go from nearly rocking you to sleep to all of a sudden exploding into a frenzy that will have you singing and clapping along. Another reason is the crowd that they should draw. Their sound is just so accessible that I’m expecting people of all ages rocking out to them, including babies and Nanas. It’s going to be awesome.

Here are some videos to hold you over for the next couple of months.  I would have put “Hold On” as one of them because that would have been clever, but even my Mom knows that one (she thinks the band name is The Alabama Slammers).


Newport Folk Festival Spotlight: City and Colour

Posted on by Kyle in Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment

City and Colour, the recording name of Canadian singer-songwriter Dallas Green, have been recording some of the most beautifully vulnerable music for the past eight years relatively unnoticed by the American music press. With three Juno Awards under his belt and just under a decade leading genre-bending punk band Alexisonfire, Green is no stranger to the spotlight up north. In August of 2011, Alexisonfire announced their breakup which got messy when it was revealed that the split was far from amicable. Nonetheless, Green has continued recording with even more vigor and feeling on his newest release Little Hell.

The addition of thick guitar riffs and pulsing drum beats on the new record has revolutionized City and Colour’s sound. Tracks like “Fragile Bird” and “Weightless” keep the pace going while “We Found Each Other In The Dark” and “Natural Disaster” retain that acoustic country twang that made us fall in love with City and Colour. The studio versions of these songs don’t do them justice because when Green and the rest of the band take the stage they rock their tunes inside out. “Sorrowing Man” gets intense live with the whirling organ and biting harmonies, so intense that you’re probably going to see the Maimed and Tamed crew at Newport floating a few inches above the ground.

Newport Folk Festival Spotlight: Jonathan Wilson

Posted on by Eric in Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment

In this week’s Newport Folk Festival 2012 Spotlight we will take a look at North Carolina born singer-songwriter Jonathan Wilson. Singer-songwriter may not be the best title for Wilson though as you can feel free to add record producer and folk revivalist in there as well. When I first set out to tackle his 2011 full-length release, Gentle Spirit, I was a bit apprehensive. Seeing a track list that features song lengths of 7:58, 8:21, 10:32, and barely a song that dips below 4 minutes can mean one of two things–

1. “Ahh shit this is going to be another self-indulgent hippy who thinks that everyone will love to hear him jam while he is stoned”

2. “Ohh shit I can’t wait to get stoned and groove to all these extended jams”

Luckily for me and for you, Jonathan Wilson’s Gentle Spirit falls into the second category. Upon first listen you will find yourself getting lost very easily in songs like “Desert Raven” or the 6+ minute title track that builds and builds into a billowing psych-folk ballad that sets the tone for the rest of the record. Immediately after I finished my first listen I thought of my favorite CSNY album, Déjà Vu, as the similarities are obvious to hear.

It was quite fitting then when I discovered that Wilson had previously shared the stage with Crosby, Stills and Nash and he is even credited with reviving the Laurel Canyon scene that CSNY embodied in the late ’60s and early ’70s. Wilson’s all-night Laurel Canyon jam sessions have attracted the likes of Robbie Robertson, Chris Robinson, Jenny Lewis, Dave Abbruzzese, Jonathan Rice and more. Wilson parlayed the success of his jams into performance gigs with Roberston, and subsequently a spot on Jackson Browne and Dawes’ tour last summer.

As you’ve probably guessed at this point we are holding out for a Browne-Dawes-Wilson collaboration at the Fort this summer, but in the meantime go enjoy a clip of Wilson’s “Can We Really Party Today” with Dawes below.

Newport Folk Festival Spotlight: Brunch Sessions w/Spirit Family Reunion

Posted on by Trevor in M&T Favorites, Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment

What’s better than bacon? Bacon and mimosas one might say. What’s better than bacon and mimosas? How about bacon, mimosas and live music? Yeah I would say that’s as good as it gets. Now combine the hospitality of a group of people you have never met, but treats you like a good friend, and you get Brunch Sessions presented by Brewery Sessions, Music Savage & Trillium Brewery. Hosted in a spacious loft apartment in the South End of Boston, one walks past the security guards and gets the response of “You must be Jess’ friends.” Well I hope so I thought, I plan on drinking some beer and dancing all over her apartment.

Walking in you are greeted with a full bar stacked with bottles of champagne, vodka, bloody mary mix and orange juice. Definitely all critical ingredients to a wonderful brunch cocktail. Oh wait, what’s this I spy in a kiddie pool of ice? A keg of Trillium micro brew and about 393,823 assorted tasty beverages swimming, with the lone can of Bud Light that someone must have put in there as a joke. *Sniff sniff* Is that….POUNDS OF PANCAKES & BACON ALL READY TO BE DEVOURED BY ME?! Why yes, yes it is. But you know what? That’s just how this crew rolls and I have to say I would love to see more events put on by this conglomerate of Brewery Sessions, Music Savage & Trillium Brewery. I am also pretty positive you guys didn’t come here to read about my drinking and eating habits, for that please refer to my indie, vegan, organic food blog. Trevor’s Treats

As I am only allowed the length of 3 tweets (29,000 characters?) I’ll jump to the headlining band of Spirit Family Reunion. This band will be playing Saturday at the Newport Folk Festival this year and I have to say if they carry over the energy they showed at the Brunch Sessions they will have people dancing in the aisles and grabbing the attention they deserve. When they came out and started playing the crowd was all sprawled out on the floor, draped over the couches in a maple syrup stupor. Over the course of a couple songs though they had everyone on their feet dancing, swinging in each others’ arms, and hooting and hollering. I couldn’t help but catch myself dreaming of what it would be like to own a barn out in Kentucky and have these guys play. Songs like “When My Name Is Spoken” will have you hollering out the chorus, while songs like “Take Me Back Sweet Anna Lee” will remind you of that high school sweetheart you lost back when you were young and innocent.

I was able to reach out to the band and get some feedback on their time in Boston (they played a show at Brighton Music Hall later that night) and the upcoming Newport Folk Festival.

Maimed & Tamed: You guys played another show that night at the Brighton Music Hall, how did that go?
Spirit Family Reunion: Playing on the floor with a bunch of people singing and dancing together beats playing on stage with a bunch of mics any day.  But we love any chance we get to play in front of new people, so the show was good too.
M&T: “Newport” What does it mean as a group to play the festival?
SFR: It means a great deal.  I can’t think of any place on earth I’d rather be on July 28, 2012. 
M&T: If you could collaborate with any group or artist at this year’s festival who would it be?
SFR: There’s no good answer for this question… theres a lot of big names that we’ve heard a lot about, and we’re excited to see. When I worked at the Woody Guthrie archives briefly, I remember reading some of the lyrics that the New Multitudes group is now singing, so I guess I’d love to be able to sing with them, some of these lyrics I’ve loved for a few years now.  Of course, I had different melodies going in my head.
M&T: Would we be able find you at a bar in Newport on Saturday night playing music, drinking or a lot bit of both?
SFR: We’ll just be enjoying every moment, whatever that means.

*Thanks to Jess Ratner for the pictures and helping me find content for this post.

Newport Folk Festival Spotlight: Punch Brothers

Posted on by Caroline in Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment


As we count down the days to our favorite weekend of the year (105, to be precise), it’s only fitting that we kick off the annual tradition of our Newport Folk Spotlight series. And who better to begin the festivities with than the Punch Brothers? Frontman Chris Thile will be bringing fiery mandolin heat to his third consecutive Festival, but his veteran status certainly did not start there. Chris Thile defies all mathematical reason when it comes to his musical credentials: He’s done a staggering 18 years as a member of the notable bluegrass band Nickel Creek, and is going on 7 years with his current outfit, the Punch Brothers. And somehow he’s only 31 years old. And, if you didn’t already feel completely unaccomplished, last year he was tapped to collabo’ with a relatively well-known cellist. Maybe you’ve heard of him?: Yo-Yo Ma.

Clearly, Thile’s skills have gotten him far. He’s reaching legend status when it comes to his expertise of the mandolin (which, I vote to be deemed the official instrument of Newport Folk Festival, by the way), and he shows no signs of slowing. Exhibit A: His most recent album with the Punch Brothers, Who’s Feeling Young Now?. The album is their strongest yet, as it serves up technically-perfected bluegrass with a progressive, pop-infused kick. From beginning to end, the album is consistently beautiful, but a few tracks have me chomping at the bit for a live rendition at the Fort.

Firstly, on “Movement and Location,” the Punch Brothers blend and bounce off one another, creating a buzzing masterwork of instrumental syncopation, off-set by the swirling vocals laid down by Thile. I have to say, through songs like “Movement and Location,” the Punch Brothers are giving fellow Newport vets Trampled by Turtles a run for their money. There’s not much I wouldn’t do to see a mandolin-off between these two grossly talented groups. Then, there’s the title track, which may be the only song in bluegrass history that will have you bobbing your head like you would to Timbaland. And finally, there’s “Kid A.” The Punch Brothers went out on a limb covering this infamous electronic Radiohead track, and we’ve been lucky to have already seen it at Newport Folk Fest 2010. Both on the record and in person, the cover pays homage to “Kid A” without straining to imitate it perfectly, and leaves us with a haunting, well-executed reimagination of the song. With Who’s Feeling Young Now, Chris Thile and the Punch Brothers challenge everything that bluegrass has been, and bring into question what this under-appreciated genre can and should be. See them live Sunday afternoon at the Fort, and check back for more Spotlights to come.

Wilco at Newport Folk Fest?!

Posted on by Eric in Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment

Looks like we’re definitely taking Friday off from work– http://www.newportfolkfest.net/wilco/

Newport Folk Festival Lineup 2012 Lineup Announcement

Posted on by Trevor in M&T Favorites, Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | 1 Comment

After last night’s lineup announcement party we still have not finished soaking in and digesting the list of artists who will be appearing at the 2012 edition of the festival. The list features NFF standbys like Ben Sollee and Dawes, big name headliners like My Morning Jacket and Jackson Browne and artists from the folk fests of years past like The Kossoy Sisters and Spider John Koerner. There’s so much to take in, but we couldn’t resist sharing a few artists that we can’t wait to see right off the bat–

Jackson BrowneRunning On Empty is one of the most prolific live albums of all time. I’m currently listening to my Dad’s copy of it and it just transitioned from “The Load-Out”  to “Stay.” I’m not sure who’s going to make cameos on “Stay,” but I can predict that it will be a highlight of the show for me.

My Morning Jacket-Yep. I’m sure this isn’t a surprise if you read this blog. Everyone here is obsessed.

Tom Morello aka The Nightwatchman-I love Rage Against The Machine and I love the fact that Newport is incorporating modern day activism into this festival. At the end of the day isn’t that why people are sooo nostalgic for the 60’s & 70’s, Bob Dylan and Woodstock? OhHhHh music had so much more meaning back then. *Spoiler Alert* Just like Owen Wilson in Midnight in Paris, learn to appreciate the time period that you live in. Tom Morello is our Bob Dylan.

Of Monsters and Men– Their song “Little Talk” will be 2012’s equivalent of Edward Sharpe & The Magnetics Zeros live rendition of “Home.” Expect this band to be playing in one of the small side tents that will be packed and cramped because everyone wants to sing along with the chorus.

Deer Tick– John McCauley is a lightning rod for festival collaborations and with loads of other NFF veterans on this year’s lineup it will be interesting to see who McCauley invites up on stage and the other sets that he will make appearances at throughout the weekend.

The Wooden Sky at Newport Folk Festival 2012

Posted on by Eric in Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment

The title of this post may be a bit misleading, or is it? Although no bands have been confirmed for the 2012 edition of the Newport Folk Festival, one that we would love to see down at the Fort this summer is Toronto indie rock outfit The Wooden Sky. Our friends over at Visible Voice have begun a grassroots campaign to get the band booked for the legendary festival and from their homepage you’ll notice that they’re not shy about spreading the good word.

A Facebook event has been created for the cause and with NFF encouraging lineup suggestions via social media this thing might actually work with some help from all of you. For us here at M&T the inclusion of The Wooden Sky at NFF ’12 would only be natural. After listening to the band’s full set from a recent show at Lizard Lounge via Visible Voice we think that you will agree.

Take for example the first new song that the band played in their set at the Lizard. After listening to that track we were already envisioning the passion in lead singer Gavin Gardiner’s voice garnering a standing ovation at the festival, much like the one received by Trampled By Turtles this summer. TBT returned to the stage for an encore featuring their cover of Pixies’ “Where Is My Mind,” and The Wooden Sky even has the perfect genre bending cover to tackle a similar encore with their rendition of Nirvana’s “All Apologies” which can also be heard on the Lizard Lounge set.

If you agree with us and Visible Voice then do your part to get The Wooden Sky at Newport Folk Festival 2012 by sharing the link to this article, joining the cause on Facebook and telling all of your friends to suggest The Wooden Sky to the festival via the social media outlet of their choice.


Newport Folk Festival 2011 Highlights–More to Come!!

Posted on by Eric in Newport Folk Festival Spotlight | Leave a comment

This weekend’s Newport Folk Festival was a whirlwind of music, interviews, backstage beers and just general folkin’ around that is far too much to cover in just one post. Below the three of us who were in attendance selected one highlight of the weekend to hold you all over until we bring on more coverage.

We were lucky enough to speak with members of Delta Spirit, Middle Brother, Dawes, Decemberists, David Wax Museum, Freelance Whales, Tegan and Sara, Trampled By Turtles and festival producers Jay Sweet and the legendary George Wein. We will be posting these interviews as well as photos from the festival throughout the week so make sure to choose Maimed and Tamed as your destination for your Newport Folk Festival 2011 recap.

Eric- Trampled By Turtles on Sunday 7/31 at 1:40pm Quad Stage

One of the highlights of this tremendous weekend for me was Trampled By Turtles’ set at the Quad stage on Sunday. We knew that the boys from Duluth were going to come ready to rock since they are preceded by their impeccable live performance reputation, but I don’t think we really had a clear idea as to what we were getting ourselves into. Dave Simonett and the rest of the TBT crew stormed through a set of some of the most progressive bluegrass music you will ever hear at Newport, highlighted by feverish solos from Erik Berry on the mandolin and Ryan Young on the fiddle.

I was surprised to see that the crowd stayed in their seats up until the last song, but at that point it was clear that everyone wanted to dance. Closing out their set with fan favorite “Wait So Long” turned the Quad stage into a full-on hoedown. The ovation was so immense when the band had finished that festival producer Jay Sweet took the stage and remarked “Do I even have to ask?” before inviting the band on for one more song. And oh was it a treat.

TBT delivered an incredible rendition of Pixies’ “Where Is My Mind,” with Simonett referring to the fellow Newport vets as one of the band’s biggest influences. Although this was my first time seeing TBT, I can most certainly say that it will not be my last.

Caroline- Middle Brother/Dawes on Sunday 7/31 at 4:20pm Quad Stage

Expectations were high for Middle Brother’s Sunday set at the Newport Folk Fest.  The super-group was scheduled to perform at 4:20, at the same time as  both The Head and the Heart, and the legendary Elvis Costello.  Regardless of the tug-of-war-like conflict, the Quad Stage was bursting with hungry Middle Bro fans.  In addition to the project’s frontmen (Taylor Goldsmith of Dawes, Matt Vasquez of Delta Spirit and John McCauley of Deer Tick), we also spotted members of their respective bands in the wings.  All of Dawes was accounted for, ready to back up both Middle Brother and M. Ward, as well as Jon Jameson and Kelly Winrich of Delta Spirit.  With all of the boys lined up, ready to play the final (official) show of the Middle Brother tour, yeah, you could say expectations were high.

So Middle Bro grabbed their beers and guitars and took the stage, blasting through almost every track from their album with explosive energy to spare.  From Vasquez’s chain smoking to drummer Griffin Goldsmith’s bizarro facial expressions (they put John Mayer’s to shame), each player contributed to Middle Brother’s charming and unique stage presence.  We captured a great moment during Taylor’s solo “Wilderness,” where he earnestly confessed that he hadn’t played the song in months and had forgotten the last verse.  As Goldsmith stood strumming the chords, racking his brain, Vasquez ran out from backstage, screaming the lyrics out to Taylor, and ultimately joining him on stage to finish the song.  It was a classic moment that certainly captured the fraternal spirit of the Middle Brother crew.  Fittingly, the band closed with “Middle Brother,” packing all of the Delta Spirit and Dawes boys, as well as honorary Mid Bro member Jonny Corndawg, on stage.  While the set would have been one of Newport’s finest if it had ended here, it didn’t.

As we suspected, the unstoppable Dawes was ready and willing to slip in a few of their own tracks.  They kicked off with the epic buildup of “Fire Away.”  The track from their new album, Nothing is Wrong, was a fun nod to Newport veterans, considering it was tested out for the audience at last year’s festival.  The song has ripened with age, coming to a huge crescendo outfitted with spot-on guitar solos.  It was easily one of our most memorable tracks of the weekend.  Next was “When My Time Comes,” which was turned up a notch thanks to the Middle Brother boys: McCauley took on a verse and lent his microphone out to singing fans, and Vasquez kept the energy high by running through the aisles in the crowd.  As of today, there are no future tour dates set for Middle Brother.  While it’s disheartening to see them to go their separate ways, the boys of Delta Spirit, Dawes, and Deer Tick have proven that anytime they reunite in the future, be it in two weeks or in a year, an irreplaceable musical brotherhood and bond will still remain.

Trevor- River City Extension on Saturday 7/30 at 12:35pm Quad Stage

I knew that it was going to be one of the best weekends of my summer right when River City Extension walked onto the Quad Stage. First they picked up their instruments. Second, they took the crowd from their seats in Newport to folking heaven in a matter of seconds. Joe Michelini led the band in a transcendent performance by belting out hits from the group’s 2010 album, The Unmistakeable Man. The most notable performances being, “South for the Winter” (about 10 minutes into the set) and the obvious crowd favorite, “Something Salty, Something Sweet” (32 minutes) won the Folkies over.

To honor the momentous occasion of playing at their first Newport Folk Festival, Joe led the band off the stage and into the aisles to play a well deserved acoustic encore. As the band formed a circle around Joe, the unsuspecting crowd quickly started to clamber over their chairs for the best view of these rising stars from Toms River, New Jersey. Fortunately, Maimed and Tamed was able to get an exclusive interview with the members of the band after show. Check back soon for that interview and many more from this weekend’s festival.