Music Notes: The Sugar Thieves Drop Two New Albums

Niki D'AndreaAugust 28, 2020
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Not everyone sat around watching Netflix during quarantine. Phoenix-based band The Sugar Thieves sat around plucking instruments and writing songs – so many tunes, in fact, that the group released two new albums of all-original material this summer. “The world needs music,” singer Meridith Moore says, “and they need it now.”

The Sugar Thieves’ sound is aptly described as “American roots music” – a blues-infused sonic gumbo of genres including country, folk, gospel, jazz and rock. Moore’s bluesy tenor blends well with co-founder Mikel Lander’s gravelly, Tom Waits-like wail. Their live performances reflect this eclectic fusion – since the band’s inception in 2006, it’s shared stages with the disparate likes of B.B. King, Taj Mahal, Willie Nelson and The Flaming Lips. The new albums run a similar sonic spectrum. Here’s a brief breakdown:

Dreamin’: The 10 tracks on this album include rockin’ numbers about politics (“Human Beings,” “Gotta Play the Game”), soul-searching gospel-like tunes (“Driftin’ Away”) and twang-tinged country-folk ditties (“Dreamin’”).

Anytown U.S.A.: Stories of American life form the crux of this 10-song collection of mostly acoustic tunes. Stories are first person (“Blues Household,” about how Moore and Lander met and fell in love over music) and third person (“The Oxy’s Got ’Em Now,” which tells several stories of people ravaged by the opioid epidemic, backed by a New Orleans-style horn section).

Stream songs from both new albums at sugarthieves.com.

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