Smile Smile – Good Texas (Alt)Folk, y’all!

Sometimes, even when everything really, really sucks arse, it’s important to sing through it.

Which is kind of what Smile Smile‘s Jencey Hirunrusme and Ryan Hamilton did when their relationship hit a giant spiked wall of crap. The folkie twosome from Texas had been touring together as a band  and as fiancés since 2005 but a few years later, things collapsed. In a Wile E. Coyote/ACME Dynamite soft of way.

So whaddyer gonna do? Create voodoo dolls and buy sharp shiny pins?  Burn each other’s clothes? Rip up photos? Seek refuge with a gallon of whiskey and a best friend?


What then?

Write an album together of course! Yeah, ‘cos, that MAKES SENSE.

Truth on Tape is the rather lovely and raw result. It does make sense.  It’s a bittersweet mash of indie synth, piano, Hamilton’s simple, plaintive voice and Jencey’s pretty whisper harmonizing with plenty of alt-country hurtin’ and folkie-hippy honesty. It’s about two people going through a period of enormous heartbreak and singing it to — and at — each other.

It’s kind of sad, and kind of endearing at the same time. When the moods swing between  heartache – “Why say ‘break up’ when we tear apart/We need new words for two broken hearts” the two sing on “Move Along Folks” — and contempt, like when Hamilton half-spits “You’re not forgiven, for what you have done…you lie, you sneak and you cheat” on “Labor of Love”, it’s unnerving and also…well, fairly universal to those of us who’ve been down Break-Up Alley.

Smile Smile’s new album Truth on Tape is out now. They’re currently opening for Bob Schneider and Steve Poltz  in the US, and flying duo at The Living Room in NYC (FREE!!!) on June 12. They’ll also be at Toronto’s North By Northeast (NXNE) on June 17. Check the Myspace page to see when they’re on tour. And hey, they also play house parties. SUPER PLUS PLUS: they’ve also offered to give one lucky BSR winner a copy of the new album.

Hey, breakups can be cool too. \m/

14 responses to “Smile Smile – Good Texas (Alt)Folk, y’all!”

  1. I’m kicking this off. Things that make me smile: going to gigs, chicken fajitas, baby duckbilled-platypi, filthy gin martinis, my mates and going to gigs.

  2. Things that make me smile:

    My two beautiful Rottweilers that think they are lap dogs 🙂
    Sunny days
    and Seeing the kids I work with at camp learning new things and having fun

  3. So many things! Sappy and predictable but true: Puppies = guaranteed smile. And: the chords of a Willie Nelson tune, having a pint with friends, the warmth of the rolling landscape of the Texas hill country, a pristine blanket of snow on which to leave tracks on a New Hampshire mountain, and arriving at my destination on Day 1 of any vacation.

  4. The smile on the face of a stranger after sacrificing unconditionally. The feel of the wind off the ocean as the water coats your feet. The site of the sun setting on another day. Holding someone close and feeling your bodies become one. Long warm showers. The smell of morning dew. The love I feel for my family and friends every day.


    PS. Beautiful set at the Pour House on Tuesday.

  5. Concerts, honest music, Fuzzy’s Tacos, my kids, my wife… all things that make me smile.

  6. So many things make me smile: cats, bikes, yoga, birds, David Attenborough, smoothies, rock hands, having someone DJ my ipod for me, mornings, sweating (from exercise, not temperature), being warm, hoodies, giraffes running, the smell of coffee, baking, duvets, my boy, belgian tripels, berry season, showers, campfires, old trees. And more.

  7. What makes me smile is listening to great music,going to awesome concerts,playing soccer always makes me smile,cooking food,Getting a kiss,watching dance,spending time with the family,watching comedy moves,eating mike & ikes,Mexican food,Wolfs,Going on vacations,romantic movies,eating ice cream,pop corn,coke,Pepsi,mellow yellow,the stars,playing games,hanging with friends,going to the movies,Pizza,Family Guy,American Dad,partys,my dog and cats.

  8. watching people getting happier and happier cause it’s getting warmer and warmer, at least here in Austria, really makes me smile. And just imagine, smiles are coming back as well 😉
    Cheers Flo

  9. Here are things that make me smile: conversations with my son when he says things like people are “flamboyant” meaning “buoyant” and when my honey gives me foot massages and when my little dog greets me when I get home.

  10. Waking up and hearing my two beautiful daughters tell me they love me and feeling their little hands and arms wrap me up in big hugs everyday brings an everlasting smile to my face especially when I get to spend quality time with them. After all love is spelled T I M E! 🙂 God and all the blessings he has given me makes me smile. Knowing I have people in my life that would do anything physically possible even if it almost killed them to help me because they know I would do the same makes me smile. And what makes me smile the most is all the tiny little things in life that most people overlook because they assume that they are insignificant make me smile. The smallest things in life always mean the most and speak the loudest.

  11. Smiles belong to the randomness of life. True there are standard things that cause you to smile outwardly, but the truly random happenings are the ones that make you smile from the inside out.

    #randomrantofrandominimity *smile*

  12. pickles and popcorn and waking up and seeing in the middle of the night your hand and the hand of your love found each other and held on tight.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

eleven + 2 =