Mike Guntherr & His Restless Souls
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Mike Guntherr & His Restless Souls

Band Americana Bluegrass


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


"city pages feature"

Dime store revivalist Mike Gunther juggles salvation ad sin like a whiskey warped southern soul, tugging the guilt and faith strings of even the most jaded—all this with the down home harmonics and clunk and shatter traditional instrumentation of the restless souls. - Michael Metzger, City Pages - - Michael Metzger, City Pages

"howwastheshow.com review"

Brilliant vaudevillian/medicine show/Baptist revival-esque show of Mike Gunther and His Restless Souls… he and his band really are in a class of their own. Using his versatile voice -- at times gravelly, at times smooth and longingly plaintive, at times the voice of a medicine show barker…many were converted that night, one saying, “That’s how I expect a show to be, but never see!” - - Cyn Collins, Howwastheshow.com

"Pentacostal preacher rock from Mike Gunther & His Restless Souls"

The best scene in Walk The Line is where Johnny Cash auditions for Sam Philips by playing a gospel song. Johnny was a huge fan of gospel and his gospel records are some of the best stuff he ever recorded. But in this scene Sam Philips says he's not buying it and Johnny asks if he's saying he doesn't think he believes in God. Anyway Johnny proceeds to sing one of his own songs, "Fulsom Prison" and the rest is history. If Johnny had sung that gospel song with the same fevered intensity of Mike Gunther & His Restless Souls perhaps Sam Phillips would have signed him up after only one song.

I'm a fan of music that has religious themes but I'm also a fan of bands that sing with the passion and fire of a Pentacostal preacher on acid. You can add Mike Gunther & His Restless Souls to the short list of bands performing in this genre (Legendary Shack Shakers, Rev. Horton Heat etc). The bands new record Burn It Down For The Nails comes out April 4 on Heart of a Champion. The songs I've heard have and intensity and clarity that you don't hear everyday. I love the bio given for Mike Gunther. To recap he taught himself guitar at age 14 after hearing Robert Johnson on the radio, he's hopped freight cars, skipped school to study music and had every job under the sun. - songs:illinois Craig Bonnell

"Picked to Click"

Gunther won’t actually save anyone, but lines like “just because I have no faith/don’t mean no promised land” have sinner and saint singing along -
- Mark Baumgarten, Willamette Week


Burn It Down for the Nails - 2006
(Heart of a Champion, Rosa Records and Ragged but Right)

Los Fishies/ Water into Wine - 2004
A Split single with Eleni Mandell
(Heart of a Champion)

Every Dream That Dropped and Died - 2003
(Heart of a Champion)


Feeling a bit camera shy


Mike Gunther's primitive and patently American music melds fiery lyricism and unusual instrumentation with traditional elements of country, blues and soul. On Burn It Down for the Nails (Heart of a Champion), the second full-length release from Mike Gunther and His Restless Souls, Gunther leads a parade of eclectic players as they romp amid the shadows and fl ames of his storytelling.

Gunther's First LP Every Dream That's Dropped and Died (Heart of A Champion 2003) and charismatic live show garnered the attention of critics with Gunther named “Best Songwriter” in the City Pages annual Best of the Twin Cities issue. The band was then nominated for three Minnesota Music Awards. In 2004 Gunther recorded and released a split single with acclaimed songwriter
Eleni Mandell.

Gunther, a Montana native who grew up in Minnesota, put his musical background this way. “I grew up listening to distant AM and shortwave radio stations and a sparse collection of records
my folks had. The only instrument my mother owned was a pitch pipe from teachers college. I heard the music of Robert Johnson on
the radio when I was 14, bought a Harmony guitar with a warped neck at a garage sale for ten dollars and learned to play. My lack of understanding and left handed instinct lead me to play it up side
down without restringing. I played here and there, hopped freights, got scared of hitch hiking, became a diesel mechanic, cab driver, truck driver, carpenter. So here is where the heart lies kissed off, vagabond and all the time writing songs for myself.”

Mike Gunther is backed by The Restless Souls, a group of musicians including: Suzanne Scholten (percussion and trumpet), Dave Meier (upright bass), and Aaron Larson (guitar, percussion,
and trumpet) and featuring guest performances by Jesse Greene (violin), Paul Fonfara (clarinet), Martin Devaney (saxophone), and Luc Parker (percussion). Mike Gunther takes Burn It Down for
the Nails and his Restless Souls cross country and abroad this year with one eye looking for trouble, the other for mercy.