The Rockport Folk Summit returns with a showcase featuring two of the most buzz-worthy, boundary-pushing roots acts on the East Coast. The Suitcase Junket (Matt Lorenz) is a one man force of nature employing percussive junkyard thump into his propulsive folk sound. Twisted Pine recently emerged as a four piece that has upended the string band tradition with forays into jazz, funk and pop.
The Suitcase Junket
From the salvaged sounds of American juke joints, back porches, honky tonks and rock clubs, The Suitcase Junket conjures a fresh, low-fi take on an old sound. The Suitcase Junket is Matt Lorenz: artist, tinkerer, swamp yankee, one-man band. His is the road-worn voice rising over the grind of a tube-amped dumpster guitar, with wild double pitches of throat singing. From The Suitcase Junket’s penchant for thrift and ingenuity comes this full-length album — his debut at Signature Sounds — of original rock anthems, mountain ballads, blues manifestos and dance-hall festivity, played on instruments built of broken bottles, twisted forks, dried bones, gas cans, shoes, saw blades, a toy keyboard, and an overhead compartment’s worth of luggage.
Matt Lorenz was raised in Cavendish, Vermont, the son of schoolteachers. He learned to sing by copying his sister Kate; the siblings are two-thirds of the touring trio Rusty Belle. Lorenz graduated from Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts, in 2004, having taught himself to throat-sing, inspired by a South Indian cooking class. On moving day, he pulled a guitar, filled with mold and worse for wear, from a dorm dumpster. He fixed it up and started pulling songs out of it. That was the beginning. Since then, The Suitcase Junket has built a powerful fan base in his native New England and far beyond.