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09.26.2012 | | Posted at 02:00 PM

Homegrown folk-rock of a different kind

By Evan Rytlewski
As Ghost of James, Wisconsin songwriter Paul Smirl plays pretty, vaguely tortured folk-rock, but not quite the kind of pretty, vaguely tortured folk-rock that the state is known for. Smirl’s rustic tunes are cut from a heavier swath of flannel than those of Justin Vernon and his peers, and his arrangements are less indebted to arty indie-rock conventions than the grungy gravity of ’90s alterna...