The Heise Bros.
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The Heise Bros.

Band Americana Acoustic


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The best kept secret in music


"The Heise Bros. The Continuing Saga of..."

The Heise Bros. duo and their backing band are all excellent musicians and songwriters. Their music is a mix of indie rock and Americana and sounds a lot like Tom Petty meets Beck with some classic rock influence thrown in for good measure. "Buttons for Lisa" is humorous and will have you singing along, while "Throw Them Kisses, Woody Allen" has a folky rockin' vibe. Songs like, "Zodiac" and "Island Wake," have a definite '60s psychedelic touch, while "The Revenge of the Self-Imposed Hero" has more of a hard rock feel and shows a different side to their music. "Staying the Same" will have you on your feet and dancing, and "Seven Long Years" will have you nodding along to the beat. This CD would be great driving music for a long road trip!

- Loosey Lucy

"The Heise Bros. The Continuing Saga of..."

Nelson Heise former member and founder of the band Monkey Juice (a Minneapolis Punk Band) and his brother Robert Heise former bass player of Monkey Juice joined forces to form The Heise Bros and have delivered two full length albums since there 11 year stint in Monkey Juice ended. The Continuing Saga of The Heise Bros is their sophomore project coming after there debut album Listen and Learn.

I ran through this album the first time with really no pre conceived expectation of style or genre. What I found was a well produced and very witty collection of songs. The music had a real laid back feel that reminded me of Tom Petty and Ween as well as some bands listed as their influences, The Kinks and The Velvet Underground.

The production seemed to have a great twist or turn every time you thought that maybe you were settling in for the ride. In visual terms it was like a cruise down a forgotten highway where the scenery changes with every corner that you take. A great use of guitar, keyboard and vocal sounds can be found on this album, my only complaint would be that the drums seemed to lag a bit behind the rest of the music but over all a great effort. Nathan Heise who besides writing and playing songs on the record shows a great talent and ear for music with his production.

The writing on this album complements the production well, the two really go hand in hand. Songs like (Shinny Buttons) and (Revenge of the Self Imposed Hero) seem to work right into your head really giving the audience content and something to listen and groove to. If I had one complaint about this album it would be that the music seems to move along with the same feel not a huge amount of difference between each song and by the end of the album the music seemed to run a bit together making it hard to keep my attention.

For the most part what gave this album its edge is the witty production and catchy songwriting I look forward to seeing what comes next for these brothers from New Concord Ohio.

- Indie Music Stop

"Listen & Learn with The Heise Bros."

Meet the Heise Brothers. There’s elder, although both siblings are the right side of 30, married and hirsute Nelson, a drugs and alcohol counsellor by day, a folk rocker by night. Then there’s younger, unmarried, facial-hair-free Robert, a substitute teacher who plays Dave Davies to Nelson’s Ray.

Listen & Learn With The Heise Bros. may well be the duo’s debut but as well as growing up together in Ohio, the brothers started Munky Juice in their basement back in 1995, recording 11 largely self-produced albums of nuts-and-bolts rock and roll. Originally conceived as a solo project by Nelson, he “realized Robert was on every track and helping me with the arrangements, so it ended up being The Heise Bros.”.

With Nelson apparently tiring of the stick the Munkey Juice appellation gets from the press, it’s a euphemism for man’s special water (spunky monkey indeed) apparently, The Heise Bros. represents the Heise brothers’ future. Not to say that there’s shadows from their past on this record. Former MJ bandmate Stacie Archer drums on ‘Alma Marie’, an ode to the siblings’grandmother, and erstwhile associate Joshua ‘Stook’ Stuckey contributes some sterling guitar on a number of tracks.

It’s not only their past the brothers Heise reference on Listen and Learn…- ‘Whisper Anything’, for example, features a chorus which appears to be an acoustic, down-tempo rendition of The New York Dolls’ ‘Jet Boy’. You half-expect David Johansen to storm the song, yelling: “like he was my baby”. Elsewhere, the influence of Paul Westerberg and the Velvet Underground comes to the fore.

Favourites on the Minneapolis coffee-shop scene, yes such a scene really does exist, their debut should broaden the Heise brothers’ fan base. Listen to them and you’ll learn why. It really is that simple.
- UK-Fusion

"Mpls garage punkers go all coffee shop, but in a good way"

The Heise Brothers used to be in Minneapolis garage/punk band Munkey Juice, they may still be, they don’t seem quite sure. This record however is brothers Nelson (older) and Robert (younger), both twenty something, having their first bash at doing a beret and goatee folk rock thing. What a lot of it ends up sounding like is an unplugged Dinosaur Jr, particularly with Nelson’s voice being like a slightly less whiny J Mascis. There are also touches of Paul Westerberg here and there, hardly surprising given the geography, and, less expected, a lot more reminders of Lou Reed and the Velvets, particularly with some of the vocal phrasing on tracks such as ‘Old Man’. The record came out of a song Nelson wrote as a tribute to his recently passed Grandmother ‘Alma Marie’, which is tucked away on track 15 at the end of the record (apart from a brief hidden track), though clearly heartfelt, its probably not the strongest song here. The record is built around ‘Figure Anything Out’ which crops up in three short and varied versions, spread throughout the record, and has an infectious Elliott Smith like chorus that really stays with you, ‘Names’, about former band mates, also has subtle hooks. ‘For Me’ actually is quite rocky with fine lead guitar from fellow Munkey Juicer Joshua Stuckey, similarly on ‘Ol Grey Underwear’ an ode to the joys of a long term relationship. It’s a likable record and you can feel the good natured, slightly world weary, humour of the brothers coming through, an indication of which is that all the chords played on the record are illustrated on the CD inner, its called ‘Listen and Learn…’ get it? - Americana-UK

"Listen & Learn With The Heise Bros., Get your free guitar lessons here!"

Forget Speak & Spell. The liner notes for the Heise Bros. debut album as a duo, although they released 11 albums as Munkey Juice, features the actual guitar chord formations so you can learn to play the songs. As with the MJ releases, the brothers Heise, that´s Nelson and his younger sibling Robert, have self-produced Listen & Learn....

Whilst Munkey Juice allowed Nelson and Robert to showcase their garage-rock sound, this album offers a more mature sound. That´s not to say they´ve got boring, they´ve just done some growing up. An autobiographical album, ´Alma Marie´ concerns the death of their grandmother for example, it also features tracks about their father, love and marriage.

According to their MySpace site, the Minnesota-based Heise Bros. play "Good Time Acoustic/Folk Rock", fashioning a sound where the "Kinks meet VU meet Cracker". Forget Speak & Spell. With Listen & Learn..., education has never been so much fun.
- Music Shopper

"Listen & Learn with The Heise Bros."

The best song from the Heise Bros.' debut record makes three appearances, each in different musical styles. This is both the good and bad news, because each version is just under a minute long. The rest of the record suffers from this attention deficit disorder, but its highlights are very strong. "For Me" is an old-fashioned, rollicking garage rocker which keeps things refreshingly simple, with guitar work that can only be called Midwestern: Heavy, fuzzy and simple.

Overall, "Listen & Learn" is frayed at the edges and raggedy, which works wonderfully in some places and not as well in others. "Don't Say Goodbye," a short, bopping track, uses this looseness to its advantage, but one suspects the funky "As Good As It Gets" could've used a tighter execution.

The songs are generally well-written, '60s-era stompers with good-natured smirks attached. Nelson and Robert Heise clearly have some Beatles issues to work out, but this recorded attempt at doing so is mostly a triumph. With a little more tightening and a couple bottles of Ritalin, the Heise Bros. could put out a great record of obscure garage rock. In the meantime, we can all pick our favorite parts from "Listen & Learn" and hope for good things to come. - Rift Magazine

"The Heise Bros."

There’s just something about jam bands that you need thrown in. Perhaps it’s the listing song structure, perhaps it’s the rolling vocals, but the pair of brothers Heise are utterly capable of inducing swaying be it at a concert of over a pair of headphones. While they compare themselves to the lovechild of the Kinks and Wilco, they seem more to draw from the entire middle seventies, the post hippie, pre punk era, while throwing in some of the Seattle coffee house scene for good measure.


"Listen & Learn with The Heise Brothers"

This may be the first album from the Heise Bros but as they've already recorded eight albums with their band, Munkey Juice, they're hardly recording novices.

The boys say that they purposefully set out to write more intimate and personal songs in the acoustic / folk rock genre, and at its best, they've succeeded. The bes tincludes "Dust", "Names" and "As Good As It Gets", when they generate a warmth that compels you to listen.

In other places they get dragged down a generic indie rock sidetrack with neither the songs nor the arrangements leaping out at you, but when they get it right as on album highlight "Whisper Yesterday", it's a delight.
- Zeitgeist

"Listen & Learn with The Heise Bros."

This is the first album from Nelson and Robert Heise, who have previously recorded several albums with the band Munkey Juice, who I confess ignorance of. The original intention was to make a more personal album with a folk-rock sound, leading me to expect an introspective, acoustic-based affair. In fact most of the tunes are robust folky pop-rock, suggesting that Munkey Juice are a full-on guitar band.
Both brothers write and sing; Nelson mostly plays guitar and keyboards whilst Robert plays bass. The sound is an enjoyable and distinctly American roots pop, sometimes reminiscent of The Replacements and Paul Westerberg. The album has a warm, relaxed feel, as if the musicians had fun making it. Several local Minneapolis musicians contribute, making it sound like a band. Like The Replacements, the loose, happy feel gives the impression that everything has been created artlessly and effortlessly, when it is more likely that considerable care and craft has gone into the song writing
The brothers write understated, catchy folk-pop with plenty of hooks and choruses. 'Figure Anything Out' epitomises their uplifting sound, and appears in three different versions, 'Mystic', 'Soft' and 'Stomp'. Elsewhere songs like 'For Me', 'Names' and 'Old Man' show a good sense of musical dynamics, with lots of driving acoustics allowing Joshua Stuckey to play electric lead over the top.
Honouring the album title, the brothers show a nice sense of humour by including diagrams of all the guitar chords used, just like a Burt Weedon play-in-day book.
- Shindig!


The Continuing Saga of The Heise Bros.
Listen & Learn with The Heise Bros.


Feeling a bit camera shy


Born a Leo in New Concord, Ohio in 1977; Nelson Heise began his musicial career by avoiding piano and french horn lessons as an adolescent, only to find a love for rock 'n' roll and the guitar in his teenage years. In 1995 he formed the group Munkey Juice and MJ's Career spanned 11 years. Nelson also played in the bands Jackass, The Gidddyup Jesus and The Altergnats. Influenced heavily by The Velvet Underground, The Kinks, Pixies and Camper Van Beethoven he has been writing origanl material since the early days of MJ.

In 1980, another Heise was born in the sign of the Taurus. Robert Heise is the co-founding member of Munkey Juice, and Nelson's younger brother. Not intially inclined to music as much as his brother, Robert devoted much of his youth to athletics (which would come in handy given his stage performance with the Juice). In need of a bass player, Nelson recruited Robert to become the bass man for MJ, and thus the musicial union was born. Much like Dave Davies, Ray Davies younger brother of the Kinks, Robert's songwriting can be overshadowed by his older brother's, but don't take Robert's contributions lightly; he also has the gift of song.

LISTEN & LEARN with THE HEISE BROS. was the first release by the brothers under this name, check out the band Munkey Juice for more info on their past releases. THE CONTINUING SAGA of THE HEISE BROS. is their sophomore effort. This album builds of the strong points of LISTEN & LEARN and adds a touch more rock. Again, a lot of the material reflects personal expereinces the brothers have faced or seen in those close to them.