Austin City Limits Live At The Moody Theater

Release Date: 12 January 2024
Genre: Americana / Bluegrass / Folk

On January 23, 2020, North Carolina-based Watchhouse – Emily Frantz (fiddle/vocals) and Andrew Marlin (mandolin/vocals) – known at the time as Mandolin Orange, took the stage at one of Austin’s most prominent venues, Austin City Limits Live at The Moody Theater, in support of their sixth album, Tides of a Teardrop.

After years of building a loyal fan base playing local clubs and festivals, Marlin noted during the near-capacity show, “I think Austin might be one of my favorite towns to play in, y’all.” And this dynamic performance proves it. Supported by Clint Mullican (bass), Josh Oliver (guitar) and Joe Westerlund (drums), the 15-song set features the full, rich, and personal songs for what the Austin American Statesman pointed out at the time, “a commanding sense of how to present a 90-minute acoustic show.”

The show’s setlist spans the group’s catalog; from earlier tunes – the bittersweet “There Was A Time” and the haunting “Jump Mountain Blues” – to the timely, politically charged “Wildfire” and “Gospel Shoes.” The opening act, fellow North Carolinian Kate Rhudy, joined the duo on second fiddle for the instrumental “Hawk Is a Mule” and harmony vocals on “Into the Sun.” Do512 summed the show up nicely, “[Watchhouse’s] music radiates a mysterious warmth – their songs feel like whispered secrets, one hand cupped to your ear.”

The album was engineered by the band’s longtime front of house technician Mark Alspaugh, mixed by Sean Sullivan, and mastered by Alan Silverman at Aerial Sound, with artwork by Austin’s own Ishaq Fahim.

Formed in Chapel Hill, NC, in 2009, Watchhouse has released eight albums of original American roots music. Signing with Yep Roc Records in 2013, they released four critically acclaimed albums with the label – This Side of Jordan, Such Jubliee, Blindfaller, and Tides of a Teardrop. In the last several years, they have toured the United States and Europe, headlining venues including Red Rocks and the Ryman Auditorium while performing at festivals including Telluride Bluegrass Festival, Newport Folk Festival, Pickathon, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, and Merlefest, among others.