Artist info


Rock, Pop

Sounds like

Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Band, Rolling Stones

band members

Sean McMahon - Vocals & Guitar, Michael Hubbard - Vocals & Guitar, Brendan McMahon - Keys, Josh Duiker - Drums, Tim McCormack - Bass


Bob Dylan, Rolling Stones, Steven Malkmus


There's a line in the dusty plains that separates good country rock from its pale imitators. On one side there's the slick, pallid and insipid country that pollutes the commercial radio airwaves; on the other there's the insightful, hook laden musing typified by The Band, the Byrds and Exile-era Rolling Stones. A journey, a narrative and a bunch of damn good songs. To that list you can add Melbourne country rock band Downhills Home. Downhills Home's journey began in 2005 when Sean McMahon and Michael Hubbard began performing as an acoustic duo. Gradually the duo's horizons expanded and the duo morphed into a band. By summer 2006 McMahon and Hubbard had been joined by Sean's brother Brendan (keyboard and piano), Josh Duiker (drums), Tim McCormack (bass). With the aid of some choice support slots, including Even, Jen Cloher, Mia Dyson and Mick Thomas, Downhills Home gradually refined its sound and style. The band's debut album, Minor Birds, is the next stage in the band's travels. With guests including Jen Cloher, Laura Jean and Matt Walker, Minor Birds is laden with lyrical beauty, finger lickin' melodies a batch of home baked songs so enticing you'll never want to leave. The sympathetic rustic lament of Mess You're In dovetails with the down and dirty country blues of My River Wide On Second Floor it's a spirited saunter through arid musical lands while on Nowhere, No More and The Body You Left Behind moments of darkness give way to hope. The acoustic moments - Sunday Night, Only Badly - are carefully pitched, and enigmatic in the extreme, and perfectly counter balanced by the bar room rock of Take A Little While. But the perfect moment comes in Out of the Maze, a spirited meander down the sun drenched Californian coast and through the hazy environs of the Los Angeles hills. In the final moments Sean McMahon and Michael Hubbard's guitars come together like childhood acquaintances reunited after years of separation. Minor Birds is an album of utterly compelling beauty, an album that that buffs the jagged edge of the harsh reality that permeates our daily existence. This is what good country rock is all about. Patrick Emery