A timeless roots sound
Milwaukee-based folk group Dead Horses are bringing their quintet to Ann Arbor for a very special evening of music on December 4. The duo were first introduced to our community as performers at the 41st annual Ann Arbor Folk Festival in 2018 and have since returned annually, bringing a more diverse and interesting set with every appearance.
Hailing from the fertile land of Wisconsin, Sarah Vos and Daniel Wolff met as youths sharing a similar sense of disenchantment having just dropped out of college and living again in the rural city of Oshkosh (B’Gosh). A time of deep reflection - coming to terms with sexuality and needing to find an identity outside of their family’s evangelical rhetoric - they forged ahead on their own, acoustic instruments in hand. They haven’t looked back since meeting nearly a decade ago (and have traveled most of North America in the process), but their songs, filled with both trauma and triumph, despair and hope, are just as much a reflection on the past as they are optimistic in brighter days to come.
First introduced on a national scale through tours with friends including Trampled by Turtles and Mandolin Orange, Dead Horses have performed on such legendary stages as Red Rocks Amphitheater, and at festivals from Northwest String Summit to Red Wing Roots, Red Ants Pants to Bristol Rhythm and Roots.
Known for frontwoman Vos’ “aching, haunting vocals” (No Depression) and “evocative, empathetic storytelling” (NPR Music), Dead Horses’ sound bridges indie folk and their own Midwestern approach to Americana. Lyrically, the band explores the human condition from personal musings to observations of the current American experience, taking notes from every person and city they meet along the road.
Their critically acclaimed third album, My Mother the Moon, earned profiles from Billboard to Noisey to Democracy Now!, spots in Folk Alley’s and No Depression's "Best Folk/Roots Albums of 2018" lists, and Rolling Stone Country declared them an "Artist You Need to Know."
And it seems word made its way to London, as The Who selected Dead Horses as one of a handful of U.S. bands to open for them on their symphonic Moving On! tour this fall.
Currently completing a residency at a monastery in Northern Wisconsin, Dead Horses are in the process of releasing a series of singles, including “Birds Can Write The Chorus,” “Family Tapes” and “Mighty Storm,” which exemplify the duo’s intimate and dynamic approach to songwriting, but also experiment with ambient sounds and textures, which color an abstract landscape compared to 2018’s deeply realistic look at loss in My Mother the Moon.