Gig Seeker Pro


Albany, New York, United States

Albany, New York, United States
Band Americana Alternative


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"Raising the Bar"

The colorful cover of the new CD by alt-country-folksters knotworking drives the point home: Ed Gorch and company have burst into Technicolor. Knotworking’s first two albums were pensive little curiosities adorned with grainy, gray photos and packed with Gorch’s stirringly poetic sentiments and lo-fi production. The group’s charm lay in rough-hewn, brooding (yet pretty) minimalism; this time around, however, the group have shed their hairshirts and left the sober environs of the bedroom behind.

A Garden Below—which is bolstered by warm, full production (courtesy of Saugerties’ Nevessa studios) and the lengthening shadow of Gorch’s songwriting talent—is a leap forward for an already strong unit. The album features outright rockers (“Blossom”), rousing alt-country beauties (“A Time Ago”), and the kind of acoustic rumination Ed rode into town on a few years back (“When We Were Small”). The folk-rocker “Decided to Walk” is already one of my favorite songs of the year. It’s been fun watching knotworking develop by bounds, and A Garden Below clearly marks them as one of the artistic success stories in our area.

Beyond the professional production and fuller arrangements, a good indicator of the sea change is guitarist Mike Hotter: Behind his benign, hobbitish presence lurks a rock god. Hotter’s spare, intelligent playing was a highlight of the group’s previous effort, Notes Left Out, whose title seemed a tribute to his perfect economy. That said, it’s great to hear him knock off a searing, several-bar solo in the middle of “Blossom” and launch a euphoric coda on “Listening.” Meanwhile, on “Long Step,” Hotter bursts forth with the brand of fuzzed-up twang that would do Bakersfield proud.

A wealth of local talent—including John Brodeur, Dan Winchester and Kamikaze Hearts Matthew Loiacano and Bob Buckley—help knotworking out, along with longtime allies Karen Codd (cello) and Megan Prokorym (violin). Gorch, Hotter and co. deserve a big pat on the back; A Garden Below is a great album. Look for an official release in July - Metroland

"All Music Guide review"

Knotworking consists of singer/songwriter/guitarist Edward Gorch and a revolving circle of musically inclined friends from his adopted hometown of Albany, NY, though given the spare, understated approach and consistently strong material on the album Notes Left Out, it appears Gorch doesn’t need a great deal of help from others. Gorch’s songs seem to travel the same long, lonely road as Will Oldham, Richard Buckner, and Souled American, though Gorch’s simple but evocative melodies and literate, well-detailed lyrics make it clear he’s found his own distinct voice as a songwriter; and his ability to write with equal passion and emotional impact about themes both personal (“Not Bigger,” “Last Went First”) and political (“Lawn Plastic Santa,” “Manuel”) reveals an encouraging broad thematic palate. Most of Notes Left Out was recorded in Gorch’s attic on a four-track tape machine he rescued from the trash, and while the production is low-tech, it’s also clean, well-recorded, and serves the material quite well - and “Imbecile Smile” and “Came to Save” show that he also knows what to do with the dynamics of a full rock band as well as the smaller ensembles which dominate the album. Notes Left Out may be modest in its means, but it’s rich in fine songs and memorable performances, and makes clear that Edward Gorch and company are artists to watch. -

"Amplifier Review"

Garbage collector and ace songwriter Edward Gorch returns with the third album from his revolving Albany collective. Gorch is a budding master of laid-back and literate songs with a country music feel that move along like a perfectly slow Sunday morning. The Garden Below showcases Gorch’s gift for cleverly thoughtful lyrics and pleasing melodies matched by this band’s considerable skills. Attention grabbing first lines like, “you can’t tell a kiss from a mouthful of blood” from “You’d be Queen” or “I was looking for your record on a ‘jukebox’ labeled sin” from “Long Step” are guaranteed to hook you. Gorch and gang are equally capable at more rowdy fare, too: “Blossom” is a fuzzy and fun kiss-off to a former lover, and the slow building “A Time Ago” features the hot licks of lead guitarist Michael Hotter, who also wrote three of these songs. A highly enjoyable album from a talented group on the rise. - Amplifier

"Big Takeover review"

Edward Gorch and his association of cohorts and collaborators have concocted a wonderful stew of stripped down alt-country folk that truly deserves your attention. Never mind the impenetrably dark sensibility that governs his work; that's only part of Gorch's songwriting genius! Fans of Will Oldham, Alejandro Escovedo, and David Pajo's latest should seek this out. A solid piece of work from an emerging talent. - The Big Takeover

"First Splendid ezine review"

Poetry, they say, is compression, where one perfect word makes a more powerful impression than the three or four approximate ones it replaces. Notes Left Out is a masterful illustration of this concept. Not just words, but as the title says, notes, are used sparingly and to maximum effect. Stripped down to acoustic guitar and Edward Gorch's flutish tremolo, lines reverberate in your head, even as you lean forward for what comes next.

The first four songs on the album shoot you dead with a rifle fire intensity. If you've ever lost patience with a singer/songwriter whining about his love life, Knotworking provides a remedy. "Blankets" sketches a passion so overwhelming it drowns and envelops two lovers "pretending the bed is the sky, infinite under the blankets." "Not Bigger" turns to the downside of attachment, a two-minute elegy for a relationship gone bad. There's a crazy, contained energy in "Imbecile Smile" which erupts at the end in a reeling cacophony of drunken sound. And if "Lawn Plastic Santas" doesn't break your heart, go to Hollywood and start making situation comedies, because there is no hope for you as a human being. It's a novel in miniature -- a stark three and a half minutes on poverty and loss that leaves you gasping. There are seven more songs on the album, and some of them are quite good, but once you've reached the peak at "Lawn Plastic Santas", there's nowhere to go but down.

Knotworking, based in Albany, New York, calls up comparisons with other reimaginers of traditional forms, like The Palace Brothers (and other Will Oldham projects). It has the same minor, Appalachian lilt and barely contained feeling. But ultimately, Knotworking's Notes Left Out is a work all its own, as remarkable for the sounds and words implied as for those plainly stated. - splendid ezine

"Second splendid review"

Last time we caught up with Knotworking, the Albany-based traditional folk/alt-country band was basically guitarist and songwriter Edward Gorch and singer and guitarist Michael Hotter, supplemented as needed by friends and acquaintances. This time out, in Knotworking's excellent third album, there is a far richer, more varied feel to the band's sound, guitar and vocals supported by a sweetening blend of cello, violin, electric bass and drums. And while Gorch's songs will never be exactly upbeat, there is something more hopeful here, not just in the words but in the music as well.

That's the positive, but there is a downside. Of the 12 tracks on The Garden Below, none have the stunning, stripped-down urgency of "Lawn Plastic Santa" and only "You'd Be Queen" comes close. There's some sort of trade-off here between the much stronger musical arrangements and the less compelling songs underneath. Say the last album was a dirty window, looking out onto almost unbearably intense scenes of poverty and hope and failure. With this one, the glass has been scrubbed with Windex, the car on blocks outside removed and the lawn mowed.

The Garden Below is also a lot more varied than the previous album, with rocking tracks like "Blossom" going head to head with the introspective soft pop of "All You Could Bring". Highlights include the plaintive, cello-warmed "When We Were Small", the slow-building anthem "Listening" and the starkly excellent "You'd Be Queen" (Sample lyric: "You can't tell a kiss from a mouth full of blood / Why would you / Stay with him.") Best of all, though, may be the sole Hotter-written tune, the gospel-flavored title track. It's of a class with Waits's "Come on Up to the House", a sweeping, life-affirming, death-denying ballad that lifts your heart with every Sunday-school piano chord. - Splendid Ezine

"Best Alt-Country Band (Metroland)"

“Alternative country” has become a hazy tag, pulling in all kinds of genres with its catholic reach—making it a fitting category for knotworking’s rootsy, hard-to-categorize music. No longer just the vision of Ed Gorch, this is a group in the fullest sense, abetted by guitarist Michael Hotter’s broad range and the rich string work of Cellist Karen Codd and Violinist Megan Prokorym. The group’s new album, The Garden Below, ranges from country-shuffling to brooding folk to indie rock and back again. It’s a strong statement of the breadth, scope and collaborative nature of this ensemble. And Ed Gorch is still writing those heart-piercing tunes. - Metroland


knotworking (self-titled) 2000
Notes Left Out (2001)
The Garden Below (2003)
(as of yet unreleased) Who Cares About the Fair? (2004) (plans to re-record and finish the album in early 2007)

knotworking songs have been added to the playlists of hundreds of college radio stations in the USA and Canada. They made it to #14 on's alt-country station in June 2002. Right behind Songs:Ohia and right ahead of the mighty Wilco. More songs can be heard at



knotworking's achievements have been based solely on the music. Albany, NY's Metroland magazine has named knotworking Best New Band in 2001 and Best Alt-Country Band in 2003, while main writer Edward Gorch has received Best Songwriter honors in three succesive years. Influenced by everything from the classic sounds of early Neil Young and Bob Dylan to the latest songs of artists such as Will Oldham and the Drive-By Truckers, knotworking has in turn influenced scores of musicians since their inception in the late 90's.
knotworking wishes to share their wonderful music with as many people as possible.
Ed currently plays solo shows in his past and re-adopted home of Brooklyn, NY.
New shows are now lined up in Albany and Brooklyn, newly inspired and newly rocking.