This is a band that I've been very excited about for close to eight months now. I still haven't been able to find any of their music anywhere in Canada but there is a lot of their stuff on the internet, as they are gaining more interest in England where the band originates.
Turin Brakes features
Iron and Wine
Something a little different.
I think that since music is such a huge part of my life that I should take some time to promote new and little-heard-of bands that may be of interest to a few of you. I’m not at all saying that these are necessarily artists which I am promoting because I love their music, I’m just trying to get some exposure to something a little different. If any of you have suggestions, feel free to pass them along my way.
Here’s a look at the first artist, Iron and Wine. They have (as far as I can tell), two albums out, The Creek Drank the Cradle (Sept, 2002), and Our Endless Numbered Days (released March, 2004)., an EP titled Woman King and another one, The Sea and the Rhythm.
“The gentle acoustic plucking may not grab your attention, but Beam's delicate, hushed vocals sure will. His lyrics, meanwhile, tread familiar territory without sounding too familiar. He even tackles love through metaphor without seeming like a high school poet: "Love is a tired symphony you hum when you're awake/ Love is a crying baby mama warned you not to shake."
The folksy sound sometimes recalls Nick Drake-- that is, if the British troubadour were from the bayou instead. In the lolling "Bird Stealing Bread", Beam's voice then takes on a Drake-ian resemblance, as he sings, "Did his hand in your hair feel a lot like a thing you believed in?/ Or a bit like a bird stealing bread out from under your nose?" Beam's overdubbed harmonies, delivered in a repetitive cadence, are spooky without being forbidding. On songs like this one, Beam feels like an artist working in different hues of the same color-- blue, perhaps, or brown. Beam's voice is all his, as he stretches out his vocal cords and displays a greater range than he had led the listener to believe he possessed. As the song peaks, all guitars but one drop out for a brief respite. "Found a photo of when we were married," Beam sings, breaking the last word into two. "Leaning back on a broken willow tree/ That's one memory I choose to carry/ Weary memory I can always see," and he takes that "see" soaring skyward.
And please don't be fooled by the label. Sub Pop may not be the foremost purveyors of roots music, but they've proven before-- in the case of former Screaming Trees frontman Mark Lanegan-- that they at least know good old-time country and blues music when they hear it. If indeed The Creek Drank the Cradle is only half of the material Beam submitted to the label, then hopefully there's some more Iron & Wine on the way. It sure beats more mud and honey. “
, October 2nd, 2002
I find that the music by Iron and Wine is rather folkish and sometimes drags, but the lyrics are worth checking up. There are songs that remind me of other artists such as Jack Johnson, and the style of guitar is similar to slower songs by Teitur (review on him coming up). There are other bits that sound like southern backwater music infused with folk rock and jazz. I’m not sure that this is music I could listen to often, but for more mellow moments, this would suit perfectly.