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William Elliott Whitmore, ‘Animals in the Dark’ (Anti-)

Jon Young // February 1, 2009

Consumed by outrage at malicious politicians, sadistic cops, and other dirtbags, Iowa’s William Elliott Whitmore unleashes tirades in the growl of a crazed backwoods preacher threatening eternal damnation. And though these stark folk/blues tunes could be a century old, his tales of desperation, death, and despair crackle with agitprop punk urgency. For all its grim honesty, Whitmore’s fifth album also boasts a survivor’s tenacity — “There’s Hope for You” and “Hard Times” offer fiery moral support.

Listen: William Elliott Whitmore, “Old Devils”

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