Wednesday, January 07, 2015

River Whyless: "River Whyless" (EP Review)

January 20th will see the release of the self-title EP from Asheville, NC roots quartet River Whyless.

The first thing that strikes you about River Whyless is their incredible harmonies.  At their apex, three voices combine to deliver a warm melody.  That makes "Life Crisis", with its boxy sounding drums, into a more accessible, thoughtful Fleet Foxes.

The violin and slightly mystical rhythm gives "Maple Sap" the snaky feeling of a stripped-down Dead Can Dance.

The percussion gets downright Waitsian on "Miles of Skyline".  It couples with a violin that's played more like a fiddle, and those harmonies to make for a unique experience.

The group take a stab at an introspective tear-jerker with "Fine Companion", but it misses the mark a bit, coming across as boring more than heart-wrenching.

In all River Whyless is a pretty pleasant way to start our 2015 review.

Best tracks: "Miles of Skyline", "Life Crisis"

Track listing for River Whyless:
  • Life Crisis
  • Maple Sap
  • Bath Salt
  • Miles of Skyline
  • Fine Companion

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