|Paper Kites, The / States|
|Add Date:||2013-10-10|| ||Pull Date:||2013-12-12|| |
|Week Ending:||8 Dec||1 Dec||24 Nov||17 Nov||10 Nov||3 Nov||27 Oct||20 Oct|
“States” Paper Kites|
Excellent collection of indie folk — consistently great from start to finish. First full CD release, following two EPs from the Melbourne, Australia-based quintet. Primary influences seem to include Fleet Foxes, Bon Iver, and on a few tracks, perhaps even Freelance Whales. But the band has carved its own identity. Many of the songs are delicate and precisely layered. While nine of the tracks feature frontman Sam Bentley’s lead vocals, Paper Kites also includes superb singer-guitarist, Christina Lacy. Her exceptional voice is showcased on “Living Colour,” “Cold Kind Hand,” “In Reverie,” and “I Done You So Wrong” — giving this CD significant Meowness as well (right, Mister Esquire?).
Recommended (hard to choose - ALL good!): 2, 1, 3, 4, 5, 10, 9. No FCCs.
1. (5:07) Malleable Beings — Beautiful, slow-building soundscape. Fragile, with intricate layering. Wistful vocals with nice harmonies in choruses. ****
2. (3:50) St Clarity — Banjo-flavored indie folk. Floats in the beginning, then adds a nice energetic rhythm. ****
3. (4:26) Living Colour — Starts as ethereal and chill tune featuring Christina Lacy on vocals, then adds other elements such as edgy psychedelic guitar chords and string accompaniment. ***
4. (4:43) Gates — Slow acoustic tune with rich male/female harmonies. Mournful steel guitar is heard in the distance at several points in the song. ***
5. (3:44) Young — Lightly tripping, fingerpicked guitar and soft, gentle male vocals. Catchy melody. **
6. (4:39) A Lesson from Mr Gray — Prog rock drum line, growling guitar and heavily reverbed vocals make this song a real departure from the rest of the CD. Not bad, though.
7. (3:22) Tin Lover — Delicate, soft and simple acoustic ballad. Steel guitar adds to the lonely feeling.
8. (4:04) Cold Kind Hand — Big, rolling indie folk song with rock n roll bass line and steel guitar reminiscent of a less throaty Lucinda Williams.
9. (2:57) Never Heard a Sound — Traditional folk arrangement. Beautiful male/female harmonies. Fingerpicked guitar and synth in background. **
10. (3:52) In Reverie — Mid-tempo playful romp with strong lead vocals from Lacy and bigger guitar sound. ***
11. (3:41) Tenenbaum — Introspective lyrics sung over an acoustic guitar. **
12. (4:49) Portrait 19 — Airy, drifting vocals float in space above a repeated piano note. Soundscape eventually transitions into a gentle ballad. Together with Track #2, this feels the most like a Freelance Whales song.
13. (7:13) I Done You So Wrong — Full, hopeful closer. Perfect counterpoint to open. Layers include guitar, bass and drums — plus harmonica and Lacy’s lead vocals with Bentley’s harmonies. Sprawling instrumental trail-out for last 3 minutes. **