Danny Schmidt

Thursday

SXSW Records

Danny Schmidt

Instead the Forest Rose to Sing (Red House)

For Instead the Forest Rose to Sing, his debut for St. Paul, Minn.-based Red House Records and second LP overall, Austin's Danny Schmidt combines his literate, poetic side with his more melodic, straightforward capabilities. The results are disarming, occasionally brilliant, and sporadically aggravating. With appropriate timing, Schmidt, a Kerrville New Folk Competition winner in 2007, has composed a song cycle on the concept of money. He explores a variety of viewpoints on wealth: the gently rolling "Better Off Broke" and the brightly burning "Serpentine Cycle of Money." Meanwhile, "Grampa Built Bridges" and "Two Timing Bank Robber's Lament" are more animated character studies. Those that haven't heard of Schmidt should know that, in the folk world, he's considered by many to be the best new songwriter of the past 15 years. Instead the Forest offers glimpses of why he generates such a reaction but ultimately is not his most cogent effort. (Thu., Victorian Room at the Driskill, 1am.)

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