Thursday, 17 November 2011

Review: The Goodnight Fields

The Goodnight Fields - Sincerely, Yours EP (Independent)
The Goodnight Fields are a poppy indie-folk-rock quartet from Muncie, Indiana, and the “Sincerely, Yours EP” is the follow-up to their acclaimed debut “Hang On”, released earlier this year. It’s a quick turnaround, but any concerns that they might succumb to the well-known musical ailment; ‘sophomore slump syndrome’ is quickly dispelled. In fact, their songwriting has matured considerably over the short intervening period, and lots of promise has turned into something altogether more concrete, and just as enjoyable.

First track “Something To Be Desired” with Suzanne Dennis on vocals (Dennis and Blake Mohler share vocals) is a slow-burn tale of potential heartbreak, and will remind some listeners of the more vulnerable solo records of Natalie Merchant. On “Through My Hands” Mohler sings, and the tumbling melody and vari-pitched vocal hooks makes for an exhilarating ride. “Undone” provides the centrepiece, and its power lies in the band’s propensity towards building tension, a song that finds strength in failure and Dennis’ emotive delivery. Nice guitar solo from Mohler, too. Penultimate track, “Twist And Turn” is country music as envisaged by Fleetwood Mac, before signing off with “We'll Be Alright”, which encapsulates the desperate but hopeful nature of much of the band’s output.
Rob F.

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