Famous and Betty - New Horizon
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If you like your blues rootsy, straight up and unvarnished, with a dash of punk and hillbilly rock, Famous & Betty have you covered on New Horizon, their 2019 release.
Famous Framus takes his moniker from the brand of guitar he plays (the logo is tattooed on his neck). Whether it's part of the legend or not, he coaxes a range of sounds from the instrument, from a growly rhythm to jangly chords and gorgeous bell tones.
He's an idiosyncratic songwriter, blending vintage hillbilly blues with avant garde expressionism, and lyrics that take blues into the existential territory. On the drums, Betty Bomb is bombastic - the perfect foil to Famous' dramatic lyrics and tempo-bending delivery.
The tracks are short and sweet, each built around a guitar hook - natch - with variations in approach that keep it interesting. Gone Blues showcases Betty's solid work on the drum kit against a minimalist chord pattern and lyrics. On Learn to Live builds on a crescendo of slide guitar and drums.
Some tracks, like Daddy's Gone, mine vintage roots and blues territory, while Blue Betty is a folky duo to acoustic guitar.
Based in Hamilton, Ontario, a city with a gritty working class image, he's toured across Canada from Ottawa to Victoria. Look for the duo (who are also husband and wife) to take on live gigs in support of the new release through 2020.