Melodic and pastoral is exactly what we get out of the gates with the lead track, "Child of the Valley".
Unfortunately, The Wooden Sky suffers from a common problem with modern folk-based acts. They approach these songs with an earnestness that demands a slow, methodical pace. The arrangements, therefore, become predictable and bland.
"City Of Light", "Bald, Naked and Red", and the lead single "Malibu Rum" (and I could go on) all suffer from this fate. Thoughtful poetic lyrics, like those on "Your Fight Will Not Be Long", are wholly ineffective when the balance of the song does nothing to engage the listener. In fact, often it serves to repel them.
Still a slow drawn out number, "It Gets Old To Be Alone" at least packs a bit of a wallop. "I'm Your Man" offers a more haunting take, with an echo reminiscent of something from The Cowboy Junkies' Trinity Sessions before venting the tension with some bombast.
The record does have some stellar moments. "Angelina" is delivered with gut-wrenching passion. Beautiful lyrics and a measured (as opposed to methodical) arrangement make "Take Me Out" an intoxicating slow dance.
It could just be me, but I find what The Wooden Sky has to offer to be too subdued, too over-thought, and not raw enough for my tastes.
The Wooden Sky play the Opera House in Toronto on April 20th.
Best tracks: "Take Me Out", "I'm Your Man"
Track listing for Every Child A Daughter, Every Moon A Sun:
- Child of the Valley
- Dancing At My Window
- It Gets Old To Be Alone
- Malibu Rum
- Take Me Out
- Bald, Naked and Red
- Your Fight Will Not Be Long
- City of Light
- The Night Goes On and On
- I'm Your Man
- Angelina (Reprise)
- Hang On To Me