The Auto Club and 16 Horsepower also share a love for fevered country gospel. But unlike Edwards' severe, Pentecostal-inspired sound, Cessna and company exude more joy and openheartedness. Sure, there lurk dark echoes of Deliverance in the bounding banjo of "This Is How We Do Things in the Country," from 2004's The Bloudy Tenent Truth & Peace. But its a stylized darkness that allows room for both zealotry and playful, tongue-in-cheek commentary.
The Auto Club's gait boasts a shambling gypsy pulse (think Gogol Bordello dosed on Americana). And with a reputation for putting on energetic live shows, the group infuses its bluegrass-heavy sound with a hootenanny verve: pedal steel, banjos, upright bass, and dueling vocalists.