Fisher: True North

True North

You almost can’t help liking Fisher. Their combination of sensitively haunting lyrics with honest vocals is familiar but still compelling. While nothing on True North strays far from the mainstream formula that has done well for such artists as Sarah MacLachlan, they bring a level of safe passion to their music that serves it well. Even if you wish for something heavier or more adventurous in terms of music or content, there’s no denying that Fisher is beautifully pleasant.

Fisher’s collection of regretful love songs, from the aching title track to the pensive “I Will Love You”, True North rarely brings a new perspective to these subjects, but still manages to keep the songs from falling into cliché. There’s a remarkable level of truth in these songs, giving them a universal appeal. “You made my life so lovely I just had to mess it up” Fisher sings on “Any Way” without any sort of attempt at poetics while, later, on “The Life”, the criticism of those who have it all and don’t enjoy it is clear. “You say it’s all so frustrating now. I can’t believe you’re faking,” Fisher declares. The simplicity of the lyrics is refreshing, especially since lesser artist would approach this material in a much more heavy-handed way.

Like the lyrics, the music benefits from the lack of artifice. Utilizing guitar and piano for most of the songs, the songs are gracefully uncomplicated. The gentle piano melody of “Mary” lets the playful tribute to a lost friend shine. Never trying to hard, Fisher understands what they can accomplish in terms of their abilities. While there’s more audacious groups that may be creating more interesting music, there are few that are making music as elegant.

True North may not be exploring any unfamiliar territory, but what it does, it does well. Fisher’s sincerity as well as the straightforwardness of their music is both admirable. Although they lack any sort of edginess, Fisher still remains a impressively touching group, and no fault can be found with that.