Earlier this year, Canadian “orchestral indie” quintet Common Deer released its debut EP, I, to national acclaim. A striking collection of symphonic folk rock whose male/female vocal interactions, heartfelt melodies, and robust arrangements conjured shades of Death Cab for Cutie, Of Monsters and Men, and the Decemberists, it signaled the arrival of a resonant and tasteful new act. Fortunately, the group is gearing up to release its next sequence, II, on September 8th, and if their latest song, “Glass”, is any indication, it’ll sustain its predecessor’s excellence in every way.
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“The New Zero is, in its essence, the idea that the aftermath of an event is malleable,” says Melville lead singer Ryan T. Jacobs. “Things, both good and bad, happen to people on a daily basis and we can’t usually affect the input coming our way but what we can do is affect the outcome of what has already happened and where we go from there.”
Telling an earnest story amidst deceptively simple instrumentation, Tom Irwin‘s reflective, plaintive vocals on “If She Will” seals the deal on this melding of old-school country sentiment and new age Americana delivery.
Though it’s one of the first from off of his debut LP, All That Love, Irwin is actually an accomplished player in the sprawling, ever-growing alt-country scene. It shows in the bills he’s shared with the likes of Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams, and Chuck Prophet, to name a few. Better yet, though, Irwin is finally showing his songwriting and performance chops on studio cuts all his own, and the end result has been a strong contender for widespread recognition in the Americana world.
Chris Ingalls: Dense stuff, but it really breathes, thanks to some incredibly imaginative samples and beats. Playful but not insignificant in the least. Reminiscent of some of the great music Jameszoo‘s been cranking out. A dizzying collage that fuses dance, funk and electronic pretty seamlessly. [8/10]
// Notes from the Road
"The Joshua Tree tour highlights U2's classic album with an epic and unforgettable new experience.READ the article