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Album review: Lord Huron – Lonesome Dreams

PUBLISHED: 06:45 22 April 2013

Lord Huron - Lonesome Dreams

Lord Huron - Lonesome Dreams

Archant

Treading a familiar but evocative path through the dusty plains of folksy Americana, Lord Huron’s debut should have capitalised on its more adventurous elements.

Inspired by the wild west’s expansive, inhospitable plains, gorges and mountains, Lord Huron’s debut record is a vivid collection of folk-Americana.

Core member Ben Schneider relocated from his native Michigan to Los Angeles to put Lonesome Dreams together, shrugging off earlier excursions into electronica for a dream-like, albeit sometimes soporific, record.

Schneider perfects the translation of vast skies, sweeping landscapes and lonesome horseback rides into music, the album rarely departing from an ambling pace and haunting, echoed vocals contemplating love and kinship (Brother, She Lit A Fire), travel and nature (Ends Of The Earth).

The sound is grand, evocative and immersive on one hand but restrained and doleful on the other – an agreeable mix of Fleet Foxes’ harmonies, Mumford’s rousing earthiness and Springsteen’s downcast, dusty backroad vignettes.

It’s in the detail that this record gleams; the xylophone, Appalachian percussion and chiming guitar of When Will I See You Again evoking wild expanses, the surprising Asian strings in Lullaby and In The Wind, marrying slide guitar to Afro-pop drums and a tribal, harmonised signature vocal in Brother.

This rustic charmer might stick too rigidly to an aesthetic for its own good, but moments of hair-raising majesty can be found within.

3 stars


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