Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Fleet Foxes

It became relatively hard to escape the mass of acceptance that Fleet Foxes gained after their eponymous debut in 2008, and I predict a wave of more welcoming arms heading toward the band's way with their sophomore release of Helplessness Blues. Robin Pecknold and Skyler Skjelset's combined vocals perform as a well crafted throwback to 50's diner music and are played wonderfully over "Montezuma," the album's beginning track. For a band that has achieved such critical and commercial success in recent years, it is incredible to hear an extraordinary amount of devotion spent in how absolutely personal the album sounds.

Sacrificing nothing of the album's scope, Pecknold's personal musings over a quietly strummed acoustic within the title track feels less like a proper composition than it does an eloquent collection of his private thoughts:  "I was raised up believin' I was somehow unique/ Like a snowflake, distinct among snowflakes, unique in each way you can see/ And now after some thinkin', I'd say I'd rather be a functioning cog in some great machinery serving something beyond me." There is a glaring lack of the most genuine type of songwriting within most music today, and you can hear it all within Fleet Foxes' work. Helplessness Blues encompasses the most endearingly larger-than-life indie sound that just can't be kept quiet, while remaining as personal as possible. Fleet Foxes' Helplessness Blues is released May 3rd, and can be pre-ordered here.

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