The Native Howl have released a new video for the song “Harvester of Constant Sorrow.” The band has also announced tour dates this summer that begin today in Burlington, VT at Higher Ground (dates below).
The idea for the song came from vocalist, guitarist, Alex Holycross who stated,
“I was out for a run last Fall and was contemplating all the “mash-ups” that were popular at the time. These mash-ups were simply audio of two different songs spliced together and over each other (a popular one at the time was a combination of audio from “Whole Lotta Love” by Led Zeppelin and “War Pigs” by Black Sabbath). I then thought about an online poll we had done with our fans in which we asked which song they’d like us to cover (even though we did not really have a concrete intention of doing so at the time). The most requested song by FAR was “Man of Constant Sorrow”. I then glanced at my Metallica ring on my right hand, and thought ‘what if we did a true mash-up of this with a Metallica song?’ Then it hit me: Harvester of Constant Sorrow!” Metallica may be our biggest influence collectively as a band, and “Man of Constant Sorrow” is definitely my favorite bluegrass song of all time. We have always been against the idea of doing cover songs, but this endeavor was exciting to us both conceptually and compositionally.”
The band adds, “First and foremost, we’re extremely elated that we have the opportunity to pay homage to Metallica, who has given us so much inspiration and artistic comfort, as well as the opportunity to cover maybe the best bluegrass tune of all time. But the true beauty of this project, for us, was to compositionally create a brand new piece of music in the center of the Venn diagram between the two songs, and moreover the two genres that gave us our Thrash Grass!”
Alex continues, “The video is always the most difficult part, and we lend our unending thanks to our brother and studio partner Joe Horsch for crushing that portion of the project, as always. As far as the song itself goes, it was as much of challenge as it was a joy to find creative ways to put the Howl’s spirit and collective mind into two iconic songs, and end up with a piece that we were proud of. Selecting which vocals to use from which sections of each song was a long conversation, as well as the arrangement of the fast ‘cut-time’ (albeit ‘Metallica-esque’ in nature, it is original Howl riffs and solos). The concept for the video was quite simple: recreate scenes from the movie “Oh, Brother Where Art Thou” (which made “Man of Constant Sorrow” a hit) and scenes from Metallica’s “One” video. Both the movie and music video have had such an influence on us, that we wanted to pay homage visually as well as sonically. We hope everyone enjoys the song and video, thanks for the support!”
Alex Holycross (Guitar, Bouzouki, Vocals) and Jake Sawicki’s (Guitar, Banjo, Harmonica) joined forces in 2013 to lay the foundation for what was to become The Native Howl. They soon recorded and released The Revolution’s Dead, and the duo started performing live and incubating the music that would form their 2015 release Inukshuk.
Drummer Josh Lemieux and bassist Mark Chandler have since rounded out the lineup. The quartet began playing and touring around the Midwest and garnered a solid and loyal following.
In March of 2016 the EP, Thrash Grass was released to critical acclaim. Screamer Magazine referred to the band’s sound as “a unique blend of rock, folk, bluegrass, alternative and thrash metal genres.”
In October of 2017, the band embarked on their first U.S. tour. The Spring of 2018 saw a long West Coast tour, followed by two additional U.S. tours in the Summer of 2018 that covered most of the mainland U.S. The much anticipated double-length album, Out of the Garden and Into the Darkness released on July 27th 2018. It debuted at number three on the Bluegrass Billboard Chart and number 50 on the New Artist Album Billboard Chart.
The Native Howl Tour Dates:
7/1 – Burlington, VT – Higher Ground
7/2 – Providence, RI – Fete Music Hall
7/4 – Richmond, VA – Canal Club
7/5 – Washington DC – Hill Country DC
7/6 – New York, NY – Hill Country NYC
7/8 – Frostburg, MD – Dante’s Bar
7/9 – Columbus, OH – Ace of Cups
7/10 – Nashville, TN – The End
7/11 – Louisville, KY – The Tiger Room
7/12 – Cincinnati, OH – Stanley’s Pub
7/13 – Boggstown, IN – Summer Bash 2019