062615-mis-ent-blitzen-trapper

Portland, Oregon-based Blitzen Trapper performs at Missoula’s Top Hat Lounge on Wednesday, July 1.

Provided by Robbie Augspurger

Blitzen Trapper returns to Missoula on Wednesday, July 1, performing songs from two albums that will be released by the band this year at the Top Hat Lounge.

Blitzen Trapper’s latest album, “Live Harvest,” is a cover of Neil Young’s “Harvest.” It pays tribute to Young's 1972 masterpiece while breathing new life into it.

Upon first listen, for example, it’s difficult to differentiate between the original “Heart of Gold” and the cover. It’s not until halfway through the song it becomes apparent that it’s not Young crooning into the mic but Eric Earley.

Blitzen Trapper consists of Earley on guitar, vocals and keyboard; Erik Menteer on guitar and keyboard; Brian Adrian Koch on drums, vocals and harmonica; Michael Van Pelt on bass; and Marty Marquis on guitar, keyboards, vocals and melodica.

All the band members were fans of “Harvest” and had played most of the songs at one time or another, so it wasn’t a huge ordeal to assemble the album, said Earley.

“We were all tired of playing the same stuff and wanted to do something a little different.” Earley said.

“Live Harvest” was released on April 18 for Record Store Day.

The band is now preparing to release its eighth studio album, “All Across this Land,” which will be a return to its more classic rock and country sound, Earley said. “All Across this Land” is scheduled to be released in the fall.

Fans attending Wednesday's show can expect to hear tracks from both albums sprinkled into the band's live set.

Accompanying Blitzen Trapper is Hand of the Hills.

The Seattle-based band just released an EP, “Thieves Road,” after a successful Kickstarter campaign that raised almost $10,000. Hand of the Hills consists of David Totten, Matt Benham and Aaron Walters.

Doors open at 7 p.m. and the 18-and-older show begins at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance and $24 at the door, and can be purchased at the Top Hat or at ticketf.ly/1HWNzMN.

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