It’s the kind of music that the Carhartt-wearing, hard-working, industrial beer-drinking, regular Americans would listen to — the ones who could end up on an episode of TV’s Dirty Jobs. It’s a little raw, a bit loud, unapologetic and honest. It’s Americana rock and roll and it’s something that Denver’s Strange Americans are crafting with both brawn and finesse, like a hot rod mechanic bringing back an old barn find.
In a sense, Strange Americans are rescuing something from the rust pile — straight-forward, no frills rock and roll, and a matching aesthetic that is heavy on songwriting and storytelling, but presented with reverb-drenched punch and passion — the way The Band or Crazy Horse would have done it.
Strange Americans have three full-length records, Royal Battle (2012), That Kind of Luster (2014), and Borrow You, Brother (2017), along with the 7″ Vinyl Places (2015). Borrow You, Brother was recorded with Echo Lab engineer and producer Matt Pence (Centro-matic, Justin Townes Earle).
[Contributing author: Brian Johnson, Marquee Magazine]
One minute Derek is leaning on the bar, drinking a beer, and telling you stories from his youth of factory shifts and midnight dirt bike rides through empty quarries. The next minute he steps on stage, picks up a guitar, and begins to sing. With a thousand mile stare and a voice as gentle as it is fierce, Derek's music comes at you like a beautiful and sudden spring storm. After seeing him play, his songs, words, and layers of meaning continue to echo and churn like thunder in the distance.