New London, CT has been an important contributor to the CT music scene for a long time. One of the best bands to come out of that scene in recent years is Daphne Lee Martin & Raise The Rent. Their new album is one of the many reasons why.
Dig & Be Dug is the new full length album from Daphne Lee Martin and her band of troubadours better known as Raise The Rent (released on her co-owned Telegraph Recording Company label). I've been anticipating this album for quite some time and after seeing them live I expected a barrage of different sounds and influences that the band proudly wear on the collective sleeve. Truth be told that I was also slightly nervous that all the styles they incorporate into their live set might not translate completely to a full length album. Well, whatever fears I had were unfounded because a) the production on this album is excellent and b) this is an immensely talented set of musicians that have come together for the greater good, so to speak.
This album perfectly captures the essence of their sound. It's a collection of blues, dixieland jazz, folk, and ragtime swing. Front-woman Daphne Lee Martin's sultry, alluring voice swings and sways through each song inviting the listener to times and places long lost but often remembered. To be honest, a lot of bands call themselves "Americana" but very few live and breathe the styles of music that first put popular music on the map in the U.S. At certain points this is music you would have most certainly heard in a Chicago speakeasy during the Prohibition Era. Much like that proverbial long ago venue the music is a little dirty, a little dangerous but a hell of a good time.