Accomplished roots duo evoke the Carter family on matrilineal inspired album
‘Hurricane Clarice’ – the new album from Allison de Groot & Tatiana Hargreaves – is a collection of fiddle and banjo led roots songs, many of which are instrumental. The album has some interesting perspectives on the idea of family and community in a time of climate and culture crisis. The playing is unhinged with an urgency bordering on ravenous and owes a significant debt to the traditions on which it is based. Recorded in 2021 in the midst of a global pandemic and during an unprecedented heat wave that saw the city of Portland, Oregon burning under 120 degree heat, these musicians found themselves turning to their own communities and their families for support. Out of that experience comes an album in which history, family, literature, live performance, and environmental instability all manifest in the sounds, feelings, and sensations that permeate the record.
These two master musicians weave their own family histories into the project by including audio recordings of each of their own grandmothers. The album is in this sense a direct infusion of centuries of matrilineal folk wisdom, a fiery breath of apocalyptic grandmother energy. And yet the beauty of Allison de Groot & Tatiana Hargreaves’ music is that they’re using these old sounds to speak to something new, to speak to a dying world.