Detroit, MI looks like the set of the upcoming Mad Max remake. Despite the city’s barren wasteland aesthetic, however, it has quite an extensive musical heritage. From the soul music of Motown to the rough modern garage rock of Jack White, the city of Detroit can now add Tin Legs to that list.
Tin Legs is a side project of multi-instrumentalist/songwriters Steve Stetson and Erik Pederson, who’ve both previously played with another Indie Michigan group, Bearlake that has earned moderate success by building a following on the Michigan music scene by having some of their discography played on CW shows like “Melrose Place” and “One Tree Hill.”
When describing their sound, Brett Callwood of the Detroit Metro Times called them “Michigan’s Radiohead.” To avoid living in the shadow of Bearlake’s musical prowess, Stetson and Pederson have stepped up to the plate with Pederson handling most of the EP’s instrumentation and Stetson, a pro drummer, stepping out from behind the kit as the duo’s vocalist. Despite his singing, Stetson acts as a more than capable drummer on this new record.
The Needle Knows EP, which was released in late March of this year, is quite an ambitious undertaking for the group. The overall production quality is spot on. Even if you have a keen ear, you wouldn’t know that the record was recorded at Stetson and Pederson’s houses using only a few microphones and logic pro.
The only professional treatment on this record were the drums and the final mix done at Rustbelt Studios in Royal Oak, MI and overseen by producer and sound engineer Steve Lehane. Tin Leg’s musical sound is comparable to other indie groups like Modest Mouse or Broken Bells (another side project from a successful indie band). The EP’s title track is a melancholic break up song that is immediately followed by two grooving dance tracks (“Never Let It Go” and “Get To Dance”) that sound like they belong on Phoenix’s “Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.”
Not a bad listen for a debut EP. Let’s just hope that Tin Legs can deliver this same energy on a full-length album, provided of course, that they have plans for one.
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