Minnesota siblings Teague and Ian Alexy record under the intriguing moniker Hobo Nephews of Uncle Frank but there’s nothing hokey about their ear-pleasing brand of indie folk/roots rock. Fifth release “American Shuffle” marks my first exposure to the Alexys and you better believe I’ll be tracking down their early work as well.
“The foundation of Hobo Nephews is our songs,” Teague Alexy says. “I am proud of the playing too because I feel like we have earned our sound through live shows and traveling, but the songs interest me most. The writing on this album is more inviting to more people.
“(‘American Shuffle’) is our most fully realized and produced record,” adds Ian. “It is not just a collection of live in studio performances. We took the time to work on the tracks more so than we have in the past.”
The results are nothing short of spectacular with Hobo Nephews delivering one terrific tune after another on the 11-track, 40-minute platter. From opener “Everybody’s Got a Baby But Me” to set closer “There’s the Train, Here’s Your Ticket,” the siblings don’t miss a note. Check out the Bob Dylan-inspired ode to Brett Favre (“Old Number Four”), along with keepers “Down the Line,” “Low Flying Bird,” “Take This Town,” “The Day Billy Martin Quits” and “Me, You and the Universe.” Highly recommended. (Jeffrey Sisk)