Drops In the River
Seattle’s Fleet Foxes bridge two genres: the baroque, organic pop of artists like Grizzly Bear and Beirut, and the gentle, ethereal folk of artists like the Cave Singers and Castanets. Their atmospheric, delicate music evokes rays of sun pouring into an empty church window, vaulted ceilings giving space to tightly focused, reverb-cloaked harmonies, and sky bound notes of cellos, pianos, dulcimers, and guitars. Long time friends Robin Pecknold and Skyler Skjelset grew up listening to The Zombies, Beach Boys, Simon and Garfunkel, and Fairport Convention, and the best influences of those artists come through. The title track, a lilting, mostly a cappella ode to the pleasures of nature, sets the tone perfectly, and throughout the gorgeous, hymn-like “Drop in the River,” the neo-rock “Mykonos” and the shimmering “English House,” we’re treated to slow-building guitar swells, a deeply bowed cello, gently rolling tom drums and a variety of sparkling, plucked strings. Throughout, thoughtful, evocative lyrics, unusual and unexpected arrangements, and deliberate instrumentation that allows each musician to perform a distinct task results in music that is bewitchingly beautiful.