Glorytellers sounds nothing like Geoff Farina’s old band, Karate. Where Karate was, in its late stages, jazz-influenced indie rock, Glorytellers are on the folk, and sometimes blues, side of things. But though he has a new sound, Farina has not lost his feel for an album’s flow. Glorytellers is a hushed record that shuffles along at its own pace and, rather than grabbing you instantly, pulls you in. And once you’re in, the songs prove to be well-worth your time. The ebb and flow of Farina’s vocals on “Exclusive Hurricanes”, the short but sweet “Anonymous”, the hushed drive of “Awake at the Wheel”—there is a subtle variety to all these songs, achieved with minimal elements. Farina’s brilliant guitar technique can, as it did in Karate, still threaten to make these folk songs sound mannered. But luckily, he’s learned to let his sweet, rolling vocals shoulder the emotional load on these tracks. It is quite a feat to see a guy, particularly one who left his last band at the height of its powers, try something completely different, and totally succeed.
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