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Thugs and China Dolls: Now In Stores

Thugs and China Dolls Art

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Mazarine Records


U.S. Publicity:

Jeffrey Smith
Crash Avenue
jeffrey [at] crash-avenue [dot com]


European Publicity:

Peter Holmstedt
peter.holmstedt [at] telia [dot com]
+46 (0)33.26.0210



Dare likes to play any place where people want to hear him—living rooms, stadiums, art galleries, derelict strip malls, glitzy music venues filled with trend-setting starlets, fire-gutted churches with free enchiladas. Write STS Booking, and together we will find a way:

Bright Elephant [at] gmail [dot com]


Dare Dukes

dd [at] daredukes [dot com]

Review: Alphabet Bands


Webzine Alphabet Bands reviews Thugs and China Dolls and gets all gushy on us:

Dukes’ blend of wry, observational humour and poetry reminds us in part of John Grant and his sublime album, The Queen of Denmark. But while Grant’s focus was more internal, more autobiographical, Dukes’ head is up and he is looking out, his attention on the “the weirdness, the anomalies, the resistance” of the American suburbs. These eccentricities may be ripe for lampooning but Dukes treats his subjects with affection; jauntily bouncing along in celebration or shuffling, dejected, as appropriate.


American Songwriter Mag Premiere’s Our Video!


Boy, are we proud.

The luscious music magazine American Songwriter has premiered our new video for “Meet You at the Bus.”   Have a look and tell us what you think!

All this sparkle and wonderment is due to the magic people at Reader Films in Austin.  Especially Max Benitez (director) and Kristin Wernicke Benitez (producer).

Whisperin and Hollerin: 9 Stars!


European blog Whisperin and Hollerin gives Thugs and China Dolls 9 stars (out of a possible 10):

Something of Dukes’ offbeat observations are in the same territory as David Byrne and there are also traces of the literate evasiveness of Michael Stipe and REM. Overall, this is a great leap forward from Dare Dukes’ equally fine debut album enhanced by lively and inventive musical arrangements.

Hear, Hear! Says Really Nice Things (Review)


Music blog Hear, Hear! featured us today and reviewed Thugs and China Dolls.  Those nice people say:

“Dukes knows how to craft a song from the ground up,and he’s ready to show what can be accomplished when being an eccentric is considered a badge of honor. This one’s a definite keeper.”



Surviving the Golden Age Says Very Nice Things (Review)


Surviving the Golden Age has a review up for Thugs and China Dolls, and, um, well, they kind of gush about it.

“[Folk has] grown up, it’s sophisticated, and nothing defines the medium better than Dare Dukes’ Thugs and China Dolls.”



Blog Listen, Damnit Says Darn Nice Things (Review)


Smart music blog Listen, Damnit reviewed Thugs and China Dolls today and said some very, very nice things.  Extra points for the use of “adenoidal”!

…”a baroque-folk album built around acoustic instruments: banjo, mandolin, strings, horns, accordion and rich, beautiful vocal harmonies. Dukes sings in a distinctive voice at once tuneful and adenoidal, and his lyrics are smart and vivid.

With twin horn lines, a stop-start rhythm and male-female vocal interplay on the chorus, free song “Meet You At the Bus” feels like a gentler answer to the Replacements “Kiss Me On the Bus,” but don’t mistake gentle for naive: Dukes is as savvy as he is empathic.”

Largehearted Boy: Try It Before You Buy It


One of our favorite music and lit blogs, Largehearted Boy, has mentioned us again!  This time for their weekly feature on new music, “Try It Before You Buy It.”


MAGNET Magazine Posts “Meet You at the Bus”


So nice to be associated with these stellar artists (hint, hint: Guided by Voices).