It’s easy to be lulled into thinking it’s yet another country-porch singer-songwriter release, but it’s got a wee bit more to it than that.
A soulful release, this one: it has a homemade and patient feel to it, and is a record very much driven by vocal ideas and arrangements; you will notice that there’s quite a lot of a cappella stuff interspersed between the more “conventional” album numbers. The instrumentation is pretty understated, though at times a pedal steel or keyboard part will stop you in your tracks. It’s easy to be lulled into thinking it’s yet another country-porch singer-songwriter release, but it’s got a wee bit more to it than that.
At times things can get a bit too reflective, beware the opening duo White Dove and Went Walking, which are nice enough but a bit too "heavy" on dreamy abstraction, sparse instrumentation and using minor chords. Attention is grabbed by tracks like So Loud, which has the double blessing of a good tune, ethereal instrumentation and forceful vocals. That’s not to say that some of the quieter tracks aren’t arresting; Whiskey Flats is a seductive acoustic web, and Train Song is a whimsical enough ditty. What stand out though, are the simple pop songs, such as So Loud and This Town; which is an upbeat number given momentum by a simple strident piano part. Oh River is pretty powerful too, with tempo and mood changes driving the whole thing.
A quiet, but pleasant listen.