North Twin

North Twin

 Seattle, Washington, USA
BandRockAmericana

"Thrilling," raved American Songwriter's four-star review. "... a seamless, stunning debut, equal parts gamble and grace; echoes with the ethereal purity of Gram Parsons and the Rolling Stones jamming in a roadside tavern past dawn." In other words: Americana nirvana.

Biography

NORTH TWIN

Stronger at the Broken Places

Tony Fulgham turns the Northwest's dark alleys into timeless landscapes. Shadows reveal rich wellsprings rarely mined in modern music. "You sing to me of faith and God and promise these to me," the songwriter declares on the heady hymnal "Hope It Goes Away." "Sometimes faith is just like fighting a disease, you close your eyes and hope it goes away." Stronger at the Broken Places – eleven blue-collar vignettes fueled by equal measures fire and fume – ebbs and flows with corresponding meditations on mortality.

"Fear of death and fear of love are big on this record," Fulgham explains, "as well as accepting death and embracing love." There's good reason: Three days into tracking Falling Apart – North Twin's ebullient 2007 debut featuring the clenched-fist directives "Gasoline," "Carol Anne" and "Broken Legs" – doctors diagnosed bassist Rebecca Young with breast cancer. The Seattle-based quartet (guitarist Tim Dijulio (Lazy Susan) and drummer Rick Cranford (Radio Nationals) round out the combustible rhythm section) says Young's steadfast resolve defined the album's distinct sense of urgency.

"Rebecca did backing vocals two days after getting a porta-cath put in," Fulgham remembers. "In a nutshell, that means they punched a hole in her chest and mainlined poison straight to the heart. But most people wouldn't even have known she was fighting a disease. Rebecca never missed a show or rehearsal during the ordeal – the last day of tracking, she was cracking the whip – and the record came out great, with an edge."

Critics roundly agreed. "Fulgham has a big, soaring voice that can go rough or sweet and sounds just right over North Twin's righteous jagged crunch," No Depression magazine wrote of Falling Apart. "Thrilling," raved American Songwriter's four-star review. "Falling Apart – a seamless, stunning debut, equal parts gamble and grace – echoes with the ethereal purity of Gram Parsons and the Rolling Stones jamming in a roadside tavern past dawn." In other words: Americana nirvana.

Stronger at the Broken Places broadens that blueprint. Due in January 2009, the album merges the Faces' barroom grit with lush textures from less expected reservoirs. Listen intently as waves of Elvis Costello ("The Fool") and Drive-By Truckers ("Clear as Day") give way to a wash of Tom Waits ("High and Low") and Johnny Cash ("Black River").

Good company. Peak moments – the hooky "Wreck" and defiant "Roll On" immediately come to mind – deliver an elegant fusion of novelist Larry Brown's gunmetal gristle and Townes Van Zandt's poetic dignity. Add hope: Fulgham consistently chases protagonists through charcoal thunderclouds with broken-glass streaks of sunlight. "I come up short every now and then," he admits midway. "Somehow you still stay strong and graceful."

"Songwriting really is confessional for me," Fulgham explains. "I mix enough lies to make a good story with enough truth to get it off of my chest and I'm the only one that really knows the mix in the end. I don't keep a journal and I hate going to the shrink – although I've spent my share of time on the couch – so it's an exorcism of sorts."

Discography

Stronger At The Broken Places
Release date 01/27/09

Falling Apart
Release date 03/16/07
Current airplay on KEXP Seattle

Set List

We do an all original set that can last 45 to 90 minutes depending on the venue. Usually runs an hour with 10 to 12 songs.