Album Review: Cuff The Duke – Way Down Here

Well good goddam. After listening to this here Cuff The Duke record, all I can say is O, Canada! This quartet of absolutely adorable, country-lovin’ Canucks has just thawed my cold, black heart…just a smidge. Way Down Here is just plain great, and makes for a delightful listening experience.

Now, maybe it’s because I first listened to this record on a gloomy, rainy day, cooler than the average temp and a lot more depressing, and so perhaps any sweet country-folk record would have done the trick when it comes to putting a smile on my face. But something about Way Down Here acts as a kind of salve, and totally got rid of the glumness. I hate to engage in such trite clichés, but sweet lordy it’s like a little ray of sunshine cutting through all that horrible rain-soaked misery outdoors. And so, darlins, I feel head over wet chartreuse shoe-clad heels for this band and their record.

Right away, I knew I was in love. Opening track “You Were Right” is a finely-strummed, waking lullaby of a little love song, anchored by fine harmonizing and an overall mellow vibe. And from there, this album gets better and better. “Follow Me” is a gorgeous ditty, disillusioned though it may be, the soaring vocals and slide of the geetar soothe my soul. Something about the way the line “If you can’t walk/I will carry you back home” is sung, perhaps, so faithfully and gallantly. Another favorite of mine is “Promises,” which begins with some naughty little guitar playing and follows the path of excellent, haunting pop.

As good as the first half of the album is, so too is part the second. “Listen To Your Heart” is another good one, reminding me just a touch of Uncle Tupelo (just not vocally speaking). Which means, of course, that it’s mighty fine. “Old Photograph” sounds a bit old itself, with all that dainty guitar and piano playing. Overall, I was really surprised at how happy this record made me.

I’m waking up to the fact that Canadians know a thing or two about making some pretty good country and folk music. Of course, I should know better, given some of the folks that have come out of our fabulous Northerly borders. So I have to thank Canada, for giving us yet another band to help block out the memory of Celine Dion.

mp3: You Were Right (Cuff The Duke from Way Down Here)


  1. Their song "Anti-Social" off one of their older records is awesome.

  2. Cheers, Nate. I'll have to check it out!


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