[4 February 2010]
While its name is derived from a song by the Silver Jews, Birds of Virginia actually hail from Minneapolis, continuing an irritating trend in naming bands. Nonetheless, Birds of Virginia’s Americana and alt-country songs comprising Trees at Dusk captivate as well as any release by Neil Young (an influence of singer/songwriter/guitarist Leonard James). Soft twangs and subtle lullabies sway with accompaniment such as viola (Amy Linnea, who also provides backing vocals) and electric guitar (Sam Needham, also backing vocals), as well as pedal steel (John Schjolberg) and accordion (Nathan Simar). Some of the songs tend to run together, though, such as the strikingly similar vocal lines of “Girl from Myanmar” and “Silt of Tomorrow”. However, put on a fire and sit back with a hot cup of cocoa, for hypnotic ballads will still comfort and relax you to a twangy oblivion.