10 Songs, 27 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

This is one deceptively dark album. On the surface, it’s a pleasant, gentle song cycle of modern-day yet timeless folk tunes performed on acoustic guitars and minimal keyboards with a few male-female harmonies for sweetener. Even a cursory listen to many of the lyrics suggests a warm, undying love. Then one listens closer. Throughout the ten songs, the themes of love and obsession take on a grimmer reality. The narrators have killed their lovers and abused their confidantes. Some are in denial (“Better for It, Kid”), others recount the incidents matter-of-factly (“Riverbed”) and others thrill to the violence (“The Water Is Wide”). These obsessive murder ballads are more often associated with the ancient delta blues, the high arch-drama of Nick Cave, or a death metal band. To hear them delivered in such warm, sunlit folk tones makes the insanity that much more surreal. Then again, it’s often the quiet kid no one suspected who turns out to be the angry and confused killer. 

EDITORS’ NOTES

This is one deceptively dark album. On the surface, it’s a pleasant, gentle song cycle of modern-day yet timeless folk tunes performed on acoustic guitars and minimal keyboards with a few male-female harmonies for sweetener. Even a cursory listen to many of the lyrics suggests a warm, undying love. Then one listens closer. Throughout the ten songs, the themes of love and obsession take on a grimmer reality. The narrators have killed their lovers and abused their confidantes. Some are in denial (“Better for It, Kid”), others recount the incidents matter-of-factly (“Riverbed”) and others thrill to the violence (“The Water Is Wide”). These obsessive murder ballads are more often associated with the ancient delta blues, the high arch-drama of Nick Cave, or a death metal band. To hear them delivered in such warm, sunlit folk tones makes the insanity that much more surreal. Then again, it’s often the quiet kid no one suspected who turns out to be the angry and confused killer. 

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