The Inner Banks | The Inner Banks (DAG!)

cd_innerbanksDavid Gould, who previously played banjo for and led the Bootleg Remedy, must clearly be some sort of nonconformist genius, so gracefully does he buck trends and come up with his own version of life-affirming modern music.

 

 

 

 

David Gould, you're my new musical hero. And Caroline Schutz, I've got plenty of props left over for you, as well. You crazy kids, where did you come from? This Inner Banks project you've just released is truly, madly wonderful! Can I have a hug?

In all seriousness, the thought I had after listening to this gem-perfect seven-song platter for the first time was, "Wow! These guys have mysteriously tracked my musical taste over the past decade, saw the elements I tended to respond to most, and created a special recording just for me!" That's a nice experience for an overburdened music writer to have, my friends.

It's all here: bright, dazzling instrumentals that meld pastoral Americana and electronica elements seamlessly; a couple of hauntingly beautiful folksy tunes with soft female vocals; wordless backing vocals that induce chills; cellos; fine keyboard work; a flowing, liquidy production that shimmers all the way through…lordy! The credits say, "Recorded at home in Brooklyn, New York." Some home that must be! And Master Gould, who previously played banjo for and led the Bootleg Remedy, must clearly be some sort of nonconformist genius, so gracefully does he buck trends and come up with his own version of life-affirming modern music.

Did I mention that I love this record? From the peerless textural grace of instrumentals "Electric" and "Acoustic" (the tunes that bookend these proceedings) to the unerring perfection of "Glittering Sky" (with its gorgeous vocal duet between Schutz and Greta Gertler and some sweetly sad piano), to the killer up-tempo keyboard riff and elegant strings on "Siberia," to the surprising lap steel playing by Michael Gomez on "Buried West" and "Anthem"—that latter song (featuring Schutz again) an obvious highlight, with one of the most stirring melodic buildups I've heard in several years-it's all…just…wonderful.

This is honestly a dream record for me, and I can't think of a single thing I don't adore about it. Oh wait, just one. It's only 33 minutes long. Make the next one longer, guys! That aside, the Inner Banks have made one of the most perfectly delightful-and delightfully perfect-platters of recent times. Anyone into airy, energetic, mixed instrumental/vocal folksy post pop/rock drenched in evocative atmosphere should check this out for sure. David Gould, m'boy, you've done yourself proud. So when's your next record coming out? A | Kevin Renick

RIYL: Japancakes, recent Hem recordings, Calexico

Official site

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply