"Let us, then, be up and doing, With a heart for any fate; Still achieving, still pursuing, Learn to labor and to wait" -Longfellow

Monday, January 9, 2012

Review: Quilt "Quilt"

Released November 8, 2011 on Mexican Summer

This introductory (and self-titled) set of songs from Boston quartet Quilt is a serene, cautiously celebratory and lush brightness of an album. Quilt is a slow Americana holy dance that spreads through the mind like a season's colors spread across the countryside. The tones, at times seemingly musical representations of the band's name, are autumnal and spacious, warm and comfortable, patient and dreamy. Rockin' reverie jams that could transport you to the Himalayas as easily as to a shag-carpeted living room, the songs beg comparison to hippie folk-rock (is there any other kind?) institutions like Credence Clearwater Revival, CSNY or The Mamas and the Papas. The mood of the album, however, isn't totally indebted to the 1960's and can also feel at times like the score from Lord of the Rings re-recorded in an opium den with ancient hardwood floors by people with a fondness for late 90's radio-rock. And then... there's something wholly unique and hauntingly impossible to place about Quilt. Lyrically, the album is a bit less warm than it sounds, with harmony glazed references to postmodern complacency, the chilly loneliness of the "cowboy night" and our wide spectrum of alienation(s). Beginning with gorgeously soaring lighter-waving opener "Young Gold", the album deals extensively with notions of day vs. night, composure vs. agitation and glowing vs. freezing in the light. On the heavenly "Children of Light" when singers Shane Butler and Anna Fox Rochinski sing, in perfect twangy unison, "children of the light sleep in darkness too"... they are perhaps pleading for a long overdue reconsideration of the absolutes in our moral thinking. My personal favorite album track "Lost and Lewd" positively jumps with a restless banjo lead that perfectly matches the aimlessness cheerfully lamented in the lyrics. Other standout tracks include "Cowboys in the Void", "Milo" and "The Silver Stairs of Ketchikan"; but these songs are best when heard in the warm and plush context of the entire album.

Check out their Bandcamp and get some goodness there.
Also their Mexican Summer page is pretty great...

and click HERE for a pretty sweet review from the all poking fork.

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