Monday, July 7, 2008

Three to Consider

Recently picked up the July 2008 copy of UNCUT which comes with one of those fun sampler discs and this one was particularly nice--like just arriving in a college town and hearing a good local rock station. Three tunes off of it definitely caught my attention and made me add to my Potential Acquisitions list (okay, they made me start it--down there on the right yo).

First up is Fleet Foxes. The sample is "Mykonos" from the Sun Giant EP, although they have also just released their self-titled debut album which also earns a very positive review in the mag. The minute you hear them, you think CSN&Y. Think acoustic guitars and layered harmony. UNCUT's reviewer talks about the hymnal quality of their music evoking the American wilderness, which if this track is any indication is a very apt description. Sounds like a perfect pick up before we head up into the cool woods of Michigan later this summer.
Update: Review of Fleet Foxes show here in DC.

Second up is the self-titled second album from The Felice Brothers. The tune is "Frankie's Gun" which judging from the YouTube traffic is getting a lot of attention. They also did a set at Bonnaroo this year, so expect to hear more from these three brothers and their friend "Christmas" from the Catskills. Neats' first reaction when she heard it was "Dylan." That is a good call both in terms of the vocals and the basic storytelling, but they are a bit more clanky, carnivalesque (probably the accordion that makes me say that), and seedier sounding to me--more Tom Waits-like in approach.

Third (or saving the best for last) is Bon Iver--otherwise known as Justin Vernon. The song is "Skinny Love" which you can find all over the place out there on the nets. Good review of the album and a download of the tune is over at IndieMuse. Lots of comparisons to Iron and Wine out there, but he also reminds me of late Chris Whitley in his Dirt Floor acoustic mode. What I like is the simplicity and clarity of the recording and the bareness of the guitar and his lyrics--it really does sound like something just laid down in a room in a cabin in the woods.

That is it. They are all new to me so we will see what we think when we get full discs.


Lisa B. said...

I have the Bon Iver but have yet to listen to it--I will move it up the queue.

Chris Diller said...

C and all:

The cut I heard Skinny Love from Bon Iver is intriguing. There are a couple of no name instantly recognizable Americana voices--Greg Brown comes to mind--and this guy sounds like the real deal.

BTW,clanky carnivalesque is the best descriptive phrase I've heard for a bit...