In Review: Fantasy Folk Band Tiny Dinosaur Release Debut Album ‘Songs For The Mass Extinction Event’

“We make folk music for the mass extinction event.”

While this Facebook slogan of New Orleans’ fantasy folk band Tiny Dinosaur sounds like something that might come from the Heaven’s Gate crew, we’re pretty sure they are just a band and not a cult.

And speaking of the mass extinction event, Tiny Dinosaur is fresh off the release of their debut album, Songs for the Mass Extinction Event, which dropped this past Friday, April 8th. The nine-song album takes the listener through a journey containing elements of fantasy, storytelling, and folk, tying it all together into a glittering collection of songs.

Tiny Dinosaur combines the musical talents of six members into a unique sound that they can only call their own, with hints of James Taylor, Fiona Apple, Cake, and Murder by Death to name a few. The band is made up of Dusky Waters (banjo, vocals, melodica, and bells), Trilly Nelson (viola, vocals, bass, and percussion), Josey (lead vocals, acoustic guitar), Conner McCready (lead guitar, mandolin), Layla Sutton (drums, vocals), and Dylan James (upright bass).

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Songs for the Mass Extinction Event is a passion project, written and recorded for over two years at UNO Studios and engineered by Tiny Dinosaur’s very own lead guitarist, and their hard work shines through within their unique sound.

The album opens with “Carnation” – which was released as a March single – an energetic tune highlighting the individual talents of each band member, all the instruments clearly heard as the song progresses, breaking into their multi-part harmonies.

“Brother Robin” has its shining moment on the album, a laid-back folk tune with a magnetic percussive groove and notable banjo and fiddle riffs. It offers the notably existential lyrics, “If you never learn to fly, you’ll never be one of us.” The rootsy harmony-laden vocals shine through in this track.

In one of the more unique titled songs, “Who Put the Wu-tang Next to Sgt. Pepper?”, which kicks off with a more jazzy, jungle type percussion, the band’s storytelling abilities and the string instruments make this song a memorable one. Using techniques such as tempo changes, the story is told in a way that puts the listener headfirst into it, slowing down until the climax, which then results in an upbeat, fast-paced ending. This is very much a song to be put on repeat.

Another notable track is “Dammit”, an acoustic guitar-driven love duet between a god and a goddess. It’s a mellow grassroots folk groove, again with that delightful banjo making an appearance.

The album closes with peaceful “25”, ending the album on a magical note and chronicling the stories all together.

It’s clear in listening to just a few songs on the new album by Tiny Dinosaur that they are indeed their own band with a unique fantasy folk sound, and to our understanding, are not recruiting others for any kind of “mass extinction event.”

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