Oh the sweet sound of that bluesy west and yet underground Fleet Foxes vibe. That’s Golden Bones ladies and gentlemen. They bring a hearty bowl of alt-country to the table but don’t worry, there’s plenty of rock harmony beer to wash it all down with it. The reservation was set for a dirt road picnic, but you just got front row seats to their private backyard concert. That’s the way this album High Life played out to me. Like I was in the company of friends and they had just welcomed me on stage.
“Everyone Knows” is an instant classic for anyone that loses themselves in a gentle jam every now and then. The guitar leaves plenty of room for those beautiful four-part harmonies to gleam in like a welcoming morning sun. The drums have a nice thump and the groove is right on point. I’m a little mixed on the pre-chorus progression, but if anything it just makes the turn around that much more uplifting. Not that this is some hippie anthem of inspiration, but rather a solid rock-based tune that opens the ears to some enriching music.
The song moves with purpose and has great lyrical phrasing. The instrumentation swells just ever so slightly and hits a fullness that is perfectly timed, just before the reprise. Something about this band’s sound is so vintage and yet totally natural.
“Here And Now” is like a cross between Willie Nelson, Elvis, and Roy Orbison. You have to appreciate a band that draws influence from legends and still keeps their sound very much their own. Maybe my ears just move toward that era in music, but I can’t think I’m the only one. “Strange Mood” is more Crosby, Stills and Nash meets Wilco. The guitar finds deep riffs to ride on in the waning moments.
“Nothing Left” is a little too swaying for my taste, but I really dug their use of time and the feeling behind the downbeat. The anticipation works great with the guitars dropping with the bass and separating the verses even more from the chorus’ straight ahead rocking. This song is maybe the most clear lyrically with emotional detail. “When she gets through there’ll be nothing left.” And when this song is through there’ll be nothing left.
Well done Golden Bones, well done.
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