Ear to the Ground
You know the old story. Girl meets girl. Girl becomes a boy. Boy and girl form a band. OK, so it’s not a familiar story, but thanks to Coyote Grace, it’s a story worth listening too. The duo of transman singer/songwriter Joe Stevens and vocalist/upright bassist Ingrid Elizabeth has an eclectic musical background that really shines throughout their third album. Opening with “Runaround,” we can immediately hear the mutual choral influences in what turns out to be a great mix of dusk on a dry Saturday evening and an even dryer Sunday morning in church. The faint banjo is lonely, and its distant sound brings more warmth to Elizabeth’s vocals. Stevens’ vocals are ashy and lush, but Elizabeth commands the mic. Her standout song, “Girls Like Me,” a genuine and beautiful summer country entry, pokes just enough fun at the closed-minded individuals who are shocked by the duo’s unique romantic relationship. Without politics, religion, or ideologies getting in the way, Elizabeth sums it up nicely, “Thank God boys like her, like the girls like me.” The details may be foreign, but the down-home music and love are old fashioned.