Joy Williams and John Paul White, otherwise known as The Civil Wars, have become quite popular in 2011, plunging the otherwise horrific term into a sea of ambiguity. To put it lightly, The Civil Wars are beautiful. The bulk of their repertoire, performed almost entirely with a single acoustic guitar and their voices, is slow and mellow, but there is a warm energy to it much like the energy one finds in a shot of bourbon. The harmonies are vibrant, their voices all but designed to be sung together, and the guitar playing is soothing, though White can certainly rattle the strings when he wants to. It also doesn't hurt that Williams and White look like movie stars cast together as leading male and female. For all these reasons and undoubtedly many more, The Civil Wars have found themselves nominated for two Grammy's, and their 2011 release, Barton Hallow, has appeared on numerous "Best of the Year lists," including American Songwriter, Paste Magazine, and NPR Music.moreless
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