Diftong | Holy Bones

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Holy Bones

by Diftong

Ten folky americana tracks from the dark and the bright side of a Dutch poet in an American dream.
Genre: Country: Americana
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Bitter as Bile
4:29 $0.99
2. Red Rose & White Knight
3:59 $0.99
3. The Emperor of Detroit
4:08 $0.99
4. The Great Mystery
3:43 $0.99
5. Fisherman's Blues
3:12 $0.99
6. Two Sides of a Heart
4:11 $0.99
7. Europa
4:12 $0.99
8. All Dressed Up
3:10 $0.99
9. The King of Kings
4:33 $0.99
10. Wintersong
3:55 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Review: Diftong - Holy Bones - dekrentenuitdepop.blogspot.nl
by Erwin Zijleman, Saturday December 22 2012
(This review was originally written in Dutch and translated by Toonzetting)

On Saturdays I regularly review hidden gems of American roots music. That “hidden” does not mean marginal, is proved by my 2012 chart, where self released roots albums are well represented. Again and again it was shown that high quality American roots music does not necessarily come from the American countryside, as with Holy Bones by Dutch singer-songwriter Diftong. He sees himself as a “Dutch Poet in an American Dream” and I couldn’t state it in a better way. Though this Dutch poet and singer-songwriter released several CD’s and a compilation of lyrics in the past few years, Holy Bones was my first encounter with the music of Diftong. And it tastes like more. Holy Bones contains multi-coloured American roots music, that holds your attention with broad instrumentation, good lyrics, a gritty voice and powerful songs. Diftong’s sound on Holy Bones can compete with the sound of his British and American contemporaries and its versatility beats part of the competition. Personally I like singer-songwriters that either reduce their songs to the bare essence or arrange them with many detailed parts. Diftong belongs to the last category and made an album with many pretty details. The instrumentation on Holy Bones is rich and multi-coloured with guitars, banjo, mandolines, violin, dobro, lapsteel, piano, harmonica, accordion and organ. The instruments are never obtrusive because Diftong’s music is quite modest and plain in spite of the many instruments. The music leaves space for the somewhat raucous voice of Diftong and the strong vocals of Monique Vermeer, that gave me goose-bumps several times. American roots music is the foundation of Diftong’s music, but the Dutch singer-songwriter and his companions do not hide their European background and sometimes the music sounds Irish, especially when the violin is played. There are ten songs on Holy Bones and all ten of them are equally beautiful. As far as I am concerned, this CD can compete with the roots releases in the United States last year and, as the quality of releases was high in 2012, this is quite an achievement. Devotees of American roots music are advised to listen to this treasure from our own Dutch soil. After 40 minutes of listening they might be just as enthusiastic as I am.

Review: Diftong - Holy Bones - rootstime.be
by Valsam, Saturday January 5 2013
(This review was originally written in Dutch and translated by Toonzetting)

Can we please have your attention for this: Good Americana music does not necessarily come from America. Dutch poet, songwriter and singer “Diftong” aka Hans Willers proves it. By now in his fifties, he got interested in writing his own folk, country and rock songs as a teenager, by listening to Neil Young and other great singer-songwriters. By now, Diftong’s music can be heard on several self-released albums (e.g. “Robot vs. Totem Pole” in 2007 and “Heart In A Jar” in 2010) and also in a couple of bands (“The Understate Men“ and “Kicking Mule”). Now a new Diftong CD entitled “Holy Bones” is for sale. On two previous albums he did most things by himself, but on Holy Bones Diftong plays with multi-instrumentalist Alex Akela on violin, mandolin, guitars an accordion, JeeWee Donkers on dobor and lapsteel and vocalist Monique Vermeer. Both bass and drums in the rhythm section are played by Berlin musician Budi. On stage Diftong still plays solo, accompanying his songs on guitar and banjo. Ten are ten new Diftong songs on “Holy Bones” and we have found several real gems among them. The first track “Bitter as Bile”(also on video) is one of those. A track you cannot get out of your head once you have heard it, also thanks to the accordion playing by Alex Akela and the nice vocals by Monique Vermeer.
Diftong’s own voice is raw and raucous and needs some time getting used to, but it grows on you after a few tracks. Mainly because the songs are so much fun to listen to. We particularly recommend “The Emperor Of Detroit”, “The Great Mystery”, “Two Sides Of A Heart”, the jazzy track “The King Of Kings” and the last track “Wintersong”. Good album!



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