Picks and Pans Review: Learning How to Live

UPDATED 04/06/1998 at 01:00 AM EDT Originally published 04/06/1998 at 01:00 AM EDT

Mike Ireland & Holler

He has the sort of hill country twang in his voice you'd expect to hear in a backwoods holler. But Ireland and his backing band come from the urban flatlands of Kansas City, Mo. And while their hard-rocking brand of honky-tonk puts them squarely in the y'alternative school of country-rock, the 37-year-old's press agents have dubbed his sound "countrypolitan." Brand it what you will, Ireland makes his impressive debut on Sub Pop, a Seattle label best known for launching Nirvana. With moaning fiddles, viola and—no kidding—a cello, Holler provides Ireland a garden wall of sound for songs about heartbreak, remorse and, on "Banks of the Ohio," even a gothic tale of misogynistic violence: "I murdered the only girl I love 'cause she would not be my bride." A hint of Ireland's affinity for dark themes might be found in the name of his previous band—the Starkweathers—after the notorious mass murderer Charles Starkweather. (Sub Pop)

Your Reaction

Follow Us

On Newsstands Now

George Turns 1: Raising a Little Prince!
  • George Turns 1: Raising a Little Prince!
  • Ryan and Eva: How They Hid Her Pregnancy
  • Jillian Michaels: Why I Left Biggest Loser

Pick up your copy on newsstands

Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine

Advertisement

From Our Partners

Watch It

Editors' Picks

From Our Partners