Review Quotes

~ "A band that's earned a buzz. They churn out swirling, addictive songs, blending tradition with invention." ~ Rolling Stone, writing about The Horse Flies

~ "Hyman's instrumentals, 'Rafting (From My Front Door)' and 'Three Shoes,' feature her trademark long, swooping fiddle lines against intense and, in the case of the latter, grand backdrops, in the manner of their classic 'Sally Ann.' ...Of the original songs, the standouts are Claus' 'Build A House And Burn It Down' and 'A Hundred Camels,' with their dry observations and weird conclusions." ~ Ian Kearey, Folk Roots, in a review of the most recent release by The Horse Flies, Until the Ocean

~ "To start a CD review with superlatives is unusual, but outstanding, sublime, magnificent, innovative, breathtaking and arresting are terms that spontaneously come up when listening to this studio album from The Horse Flies..." ~ Rootstime, Belgium, Top 10 Year End 2008

~ "Much like Talking Heads in its early days, The Horse Flies combine musical and lyrical quirkiness with beguiling wit and intelligence on their second album, Gravity Dance.  Chief lyricist Jeff Claus may sing "I've tried psychotherapy, TV and beer / But sometimes I still feel like Van Gogh's left ear," one moment, but a few songs later he's tackling more serious concerns. Musically, Gravity Dance is a melange of rock, folk, and minimalism, all held together by Judy Hyman's haunting violin and a glove tight rhythm section. This is music that challenges the brain without sacrificing the groove." ~ Dan Kening, Chicago Tribune

~ "On their excellent Gravity Dance album, the Horse Flies have crafted a rubbery art-rock sound that suggests Civil War music as interpreted by Talking Heads, especially in songs sung by guitarist Jeff Claus. Live, the eccentric folk-rock group rocks even harder. The Horse Flies appeal to both the head and the feet." ~ Paul Robicheau, The Boston Globe

~ "Gravity Dance finds The Horse Flies moving in increasingly strange directions, though their traditional sound is still evident on songs like 'Sally Ann,' which has a powerful and beautiful violin part by Judy Hyman who excels throughout the record." ~ Peter Brown, After Dark Philadelphia

~ "The Horse Flies, a band from Ithaca, NY, decided that old-time string band music, with its one-chord, modal drones and busy fiddling, has something in common with the intricate minimal compositions, themselves African, Asian, American fusions, of Steve Reich -- an unlikely combination that pays off.  The Horse Flies have figured out how to hold a hoedown in a physics lab." ~ Jon Pareles, New York Times

~ "The textures are a blend of the ancient and the ultra modern. Realism coexists with surrealism, and synthetics and acoustics are interwoven. A record of dark brilliance."  ~ Dave Jennings, Melody Maker, London, writing about the Flies' album Human Fly

~ "Brilliantly peculiar ... new music with gnarled and twisted roots." ~ Daniel Gewertz, The Boston Herald, writing about the Flies' album Gravity Dance

~ "I Put My Tongue On the Window is packed with driving, swirling grooves, and haunting atmospheres. Lyrically, the album is quirky and poetic, the kind of album that makes you want to sit and pour over the liner notes while you listen. The title track is powerful and artfully urgent. ...tough drums, moog synth, electric guitar, and big reverb violin. ...Boy with a Fish cook up some edgy food for thought." ~ Round Magazine, writing about the 2011 release by Boy with a Fish

~ "Claus' voice sounds like the product of a masterful combination of the best parts of Neil Young and Michael Stipe ...and there is an eerie ambience created chiefly by the electric violin and the accordion. ...addictively groovable ...the quirkiness is endearing ...and the end result is signature, edgy, and big-time hip. ...Very intelligent, very original material, made possible by hot players with a unique vision and perspective. This CD is cooler than the other side of the pillow." ~ Overground Magazine, writing about the first Boy with a Fish album, Birds Fly Backwards

~ "
If you have an affinity for quirky Americana with a hauntingly powerful electric shiver, you should seek out Boy with a Fish's gripping new album, Birds Fly Backwards. ...Claus sings in a reedy plea that sounds like a keening hybrid of Freedy Johnston and David Byrne, while the band offers a dustily expansive soundtrack of melodic melancholy, airily suggesting the electric pop texture of Talking Heads and the authentic crackle of 16 Horsepower. From the shimmering opening strains of 'Sometimes,' with all the noir-ish menace of a Stan Ridgway short story/song ('Losing hair since I was twelve/and I think my car wants to hurt me/I can see it standing there/It's unsettling me'), Boy with a Fish makes a deep impact with the simplest instrumentation and the sparsest arrangement. Birds Fly Backwards is compelling." ~ Amplifier Magazine

~ "Love the record!!" ~ Colin Fielding, Radio DJ, Melbourne, Australia, writing about The Horse Flies' latest release, Until the Ocean