Marah In The Mainsail
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Marah In The Mainsail

Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | INDIE

Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Rock Indie

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Home of the Mall of America, the Metrodome and the world’s largest pelican, Minnesota is delivering another source of entertainment to the Midwest.

Marah in the Mainsail is a self-described “folk-core, punk-grass” band that’s bringing an aggressive sound to folk. Band members Austin Durry, 20, Alec Weber, 20, Cassandra Sabol, 17, Brady Lundy, 20, and Andy Hanna, 21, have played together for a little more than a year, generating a steady following in the Twin Cities.

Like in any family, each member brings his or her own background, personality and style to the group, resulting in a sound that has been compared to Mumford & Sons and Of Monsters and Men. Fresh off the release of its debut EP Devil Weeds & Dour Deeds, Marah in the Mainsail continues to grow its following while members balance school, work and music.

Guitarist Durry spent two years at Normandale Community College and percussionist Weber is currently studying relational communications at Bethel University. Sabol, the youngest of the group, is taking college course while still in high school — when she’s not bringing the accordion sound to the group, of course. Lundy has earned his associates degree in graphic design from North Hennepin Community College and handles the banjo and mandolin, while college senior and bassist Hanna is studying accounting and finance at the University of Northwestern — St. Paul.

When USA TODAY College reached out to the group, its members were in the studio working on their latest single. But once the instruments are packed away and sheet music is replaced by lecture notes, you realize they’re just college students and workers trying to find their way into the industry. - USA Today Educate


Though we’re used to heading to Honey for throwback dance parties and underground hip-hop collectives, tonight it proves its versatility by hosting a couple folk bands in the dimly lit basement—if you insist on reducing them to one genre. Marah in the Mainsail‘s banjo, guitar, and accordion place them firmly in the folk tradition, but it’s rooted in the Minneapolis garage sound. Loud, mean drums take on murder ballads and the occasional bit of gospel-fueled melodies. They’re headed somewhere big, so catch them now with friends and softer alt-folk band The Bitterroot Fires to ease you in gently to the sound. 9:30 p.m. $5. —EK

Honey, 205 E. Hennepin Ave., Mpls., 612-746-0306, honeympls.com - Secrets Of The City


When Marah in the Mainsail, a Minneapolis indie-folk quartet, say their debut EP, ‘Devil Weeds & Dour Deeds,’ is a concept album, comparisons with the Decembrists and Mumford and Sons immediately spring to mind, and rightfully so. But the foursome take a decidedly more aggressive tone than their indie-folk contemporaries, offering bluegrass-folk infused with punk and hardcore influences. The outcome allows them stand out from the pack.

There’s nothing tortured or ethereal about Marah’s interpretation of the genre. The band’s element of darkness is the driving force behind songs like ‘Drag You Down,’ a track off the forthcoming EP we’re giving away as today’s free MP3 download. Without it, the record’s concept — a story that plays out like an old Western — just wouldn’t translate.

“‘Drag You Down’ is the third track off our upcoming concept EP titled, ‘Devil Weeds & Dour Deeds,” Austin Durry told Diffuser.fm, “telling the tale of a wanted criminal looking for justice in the old West.”

‘Devil Weeds & Dour Deeds’ drops May 20. - Diffuser.fm


Marah in the Mainsail has been described on more than one occasion as hardcore-folk. Going into the show I had absolutely no idea what hardcore-folk would sound like… I do now. Think, Of Monsters and Men on steroids with growls… Or maybe Louis Armstrong singing metal over folk music. If you can somehow find a way to picture those strange combinations inside of your head, you’ll find Marah in the Mainsail.

The group follows the pattern that has been ever so popular among emerging groups today. A talented collective of males accompanied by a female with one hell of a voice (See: The Head and the Heart, Of Monsters and Men, The Dovekins, Murder by Death, and the list goes on).

If you think about it, it makes sense. It opens up a whole new world of harmonizing and vocal adventures.

Playing in front of a hometown crowd, MITM had ample support from the crowd and did their job as an opener to get everyone excited for the main attraction. The front man, Austin, has an excellent voice, but at times ventured a little too far from from folky vocals into the realm of growling rock. They ended the show with an emotional version of “You Are My Sunshine.” I wasn’t aware that tune could be configured to pull on the heart strings, but it did. A job well done.

They’ll be releasing a new six song concept EP entitled Devil Weeds and Dour Deeds which tells the story of a hunted criminal. From that they played “Foxhole,” which was heavy in drums and at times had a bit of a jungle feeling to it. Their first single is entitled “Drag You Down.” Give that a listen below. - Music That Isn't Bad


Marah in the Mainsail fuse biblical influences into their aggressive folk music with striking contrasts. The Minneapolis band is getting set to debut their new EP Devil Weeds & Dour Deeds. So much of what makes the album so enjoyable is its organic songwriting.

Before their release show at the 7th Street Entry, Gimme Noise spoke with lead singer Austin Durry about what influenced the sound of the new album and his love for folk-core.

Gimme Noise: Where does the name Marah in the Mainsail come from?

Austin Durry: Marah is a well in Exodus 15 in the Bible. The well is full of bitter water, but Moses comes along and puts his staff in the water to turn it to sweet. We use the word Marah, which means bitter or bittersweet, to represent change. The transformation from death to life, contrast. And it's "in the Mainsail" because that message of transformation is what is pushing us forward. I think I like the idea of being on the open seas. There has been consistent nautical influence in almost all of my writing since this band first started. There's nothing more frightening then open water to me. It's dangerous but beautiful at the same time. It's calming and peaceful, but unpredictable and wild. I think I like the adventure in that.

GN: Marah's music mixes sounds from a lot of genres together. What drew you to this fusion of bluegrass and punk? What are the band members' backgrounds in music?

AD: That's a good question actually. I don't think it was really a conscious decision. I grew up listening to punk and hardcore mostly, so obviously that's what I wrote when I first started making music. Later I got a little more interested in acoustic sounds, and more natural sounding stuff, but I wanted to add some grit to it, ya know? Some aggression.

That's when I started MITM. I've always played pretty aggressively. I guess I like the idea of making big, mean, loud music, and not needing anything to amp up the sound. The music is written to be aggressive, we don't need five electric guitars to get the point across. Originally, I just liked how fast and panicked the banjo sounded. It wasn't really meant to be any genre when we started, it just kind'a happened that way. Then later we added in the accordion to give the sound some body and some interesting texture. I like the term punkgrass, or folkcore, but honestly, I have no idea what "genre" we are.

GN: With whom did you work on this album, and how did you come to choosing them?

AD: Well, we didn't actually choose the producer/studio we used. Last year we joined a local battle of the bands, not really thinking much of it. Turned out to be a lot bigger then we thought, and for some reason we won. We were all pretty shocked. One of the prizes was studio time with SkiesFall media. So last year we headed out to WI to record what we could in the time we were given. Originally, we thought we could only record three songs, but they liked what we were playing so much that they decided to give us a bunch of extra recording time for free so we could finish the EP. They did a fantastic job.

GN: I love the subtlety of "Drag You Down" and how it builds into a totally different song. Who wrote this piece, and how did it come about? What's the story behind the song?

AD: "Drag You Down" is the third track from the six song concept EP Devil Weeds & Dour Deeds. Each song tells a piece of the story of "the Devil's son," a wanted criminal in the old West. He's the son of the crime lord known as "the Devil." He's judged and hunted based only on the family he comes from and not on his own actions. This part of the story is kind of the turning point, up till now he had been an innocent man that was falsely accused. But after being wrongfully imprisoned, he decides to extract vengeance on the mayor that imprisoned him.


GN: Any favorite tracks off of the EP?
AD: I really like the fourth track, "Short Drop." It's the next song after "Drag You Down" where the character actually catches the guy he's after. The whole feel of the EP changes at the end of short drop, where he loses his innocence and kills the corrupt mayor that had been hunting him. The whole story is really all about judgement, vengeance and forgiveness.

GN: What's the plan with the album? Do you want to tour?

AD: YES! We're hoping to do a west coast tour later in the summer. But really everything depends on the success of this EP.

GN:What can we expect to see at the release show?

AD: Basically this show is gonna be all about the fans. We wanted to just put together the absolute best show we could -- as a thank you to all of the fans that helped make everything happen. We made it cheap, and booked some truly incredible, lesser known openers. We're hoping people will come to see us and fall in love with - City Pages


Marah in the Mainsail has been described on more than one occasion as hardcore-folk. Going into the show I had absolutely no idea what hardcore-folk would sound like… I do now. Think, Of Monsters and Men on steroids with growls… Or maybe Louis Armstrong singing metal over folk music. If you can somehow find a way to picture those strange combinations inside of your head, you’ll find Marah in the Mainsail.
The group follows the pattern that has been ever so popular among emerging groups today. A talented collective of males accompanied by a female with one hell of a voice (See: The Head and the Heart, Of Monsters and Men, The Dovekins, Murder by Death, and the list goes on).
If you think about it, it makes sense. It opens up a whole new world of harmonizing and vocal adventures.
Playing in front of a hometown crowd, MITM had ample support from the crowd and did their job as an opener to get everyone excited for the main attraction. The front man, Austin, has an excellent voice, but at times ventured a little too far from from folky vocals into the realm of growling rock. They ended the show with an emotional version of “You Are My Sunshine.” I wasn’t aware that tune could be configured to pull on the heart strings, but it did. A job well done.
They’ll be releasing a new six song concept EP entitled Devil Weeds and Dour Deeds which tells the story of a hunted criminal. From that they played “Foxhole,” which was heavy in drums and at times had a bit of a jungle feeling to it. - Music That Isn't Bad


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

Springing from the musically fertile soil of Minneapolis, Marah In The Mainsail blazes a trail through the wilderness of folk music with their aggressive take on the genre. The band has been carving a name for themselves in the midwest United States and beyond with their subtle nod to blues and punk music, played with traditional bluegrass instruments and steeped in folk influence.

Their debut, Devil Weeds and Dour Deeds" is to be independently released this spring followed by southwest and west coast touring in May and June.

Band Members