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“A few weeks back, I experienced something new in the world of music. I watched a man play a kazoo in a harmonica holder live on stage while playing the banjo. For those of you that were at the High Dive in Seattle that night, you know I'm talking about The Ames. This amazing trio of musicians gives me a little throwback to Ben Folds yet has a lead singer with a jazzy staccato like that of Jamie Cullum. Throw in the banjo and kazoo and you've got something different altogether. The energy of this group is nothing short of captivating. You can check out their music on their bandcamp site. I highly recommend picking up their EP for $5. It will be money well spent. ”
"Three-piece collective The Ames - drummer Michael Lanz, bassist Dan Swan, and multi-instrumentalist Sam Carlton, who contributes lead vocals, keys, banjo, guitar, harmonica, and the occasional kazoo - make a type of music that fits their hometown of Bellingham: quaint, chaming, and a little off-kilter. The band...offers a good lesson on how folk can be fun - theatrically woeful vocals and loose, freewheeling melodies backed by plinking strings and a pounding ragtime piano. It's foot-stomping, saloon-style folk, its mischievousness enhanced by snarky, devil-may-care lyrics like 'You may cry, tattle, and stomp/And honestly, honey, ain't nothing else wrong/Except for I/Really think that you're ugly.'"
"The Ames' self-titled album is beautifully packaged. And the result is quite lovely as well. The band's cohesive sound is crisp; they understand each other, each musician complements on another. It is apparent that the album was a product of hard work and dedication meant to showcase the talent of The Ames. There is a perfect proportion of energy and calm with The Ames. Music that is equally content in the background or center stage, the versatility of The Ames' sound is enjoyable for all. There is an aged quality to their music; The Ames refuse to be grouped with any particular era as they constantly shift tones. They call themselves modern, yet timelessness is a valuable quality that The Ames have captured in their debut."
"The Ames have put together a sound that combines a modern sensibility with traditional influences. The guys are from Bellingham and have put together a recording that is heartfelt and unpretentious. Sam, Mike and Dan seem to actually enjoy each other on a personal basis and the music reflects that mutual respect."