Milk Carton Kids. A name like that is bound to conjure up images of missing children, not two guys from L.A. with badass guitar skills and harmonies that take you far, far away. The Milk Carton Kids, a folk duo comprised of guitarists/vocalists Joey Ryan and Kenneth Pattengale, are harmony-driven, lyrically impressive and perhaps unintentionally comedic. Kicking off their headlining tour in Denver at Swallow Hill last week, the pair wowed with their powerful, story-driven tunes, effortless harmonies and witty dialogue. The banter intermixed with beautiful songs and one of the hottest pickers around (Pattengale) was so on point it’s hard to believe it wasn’t scripted. Just another means to justify why this contemporary folk twosome is a must see/must hear. Conveniently, both Milk Carton Kids’ albums are available for free download on their site.

One of the things that make these guys different from all the indie/folk acts popping up these days is that Ryan and Pattengale complement one another beyond the obvious, impressive musical talent. They’re hilarious, in a deadpan, off the cuff, awkward kinda way. The Milk Carton Kids, their acoustic, sweet guitars and striking harmonies, are not just your everyday folksy duo; they’ve got something special and awesome that should be experienced by all.

The Milk Carton Kids perform “Michigan” off their latest album: