First Aid Kit - 2014
I was really hoping that First Aid Kit would take a big step forward on this album. Mike Mogis (Bright Eyes, Monsters Of Folk) was back as producer, and I figured now that they had a couple of years of experience under their belt, they might really put together something great. Their 2012 album “The Lion’s Roar” has two gems on it , (“Emmylou” and “The Lion’s Roar”), but otherwise it’s only a decent album.
My assessment of “decent" would be fine for most releases, but F.A.K. isn’t just any young duo. They have a gift. Female harmonies don’t often sound this perfectly melded together. They’re good on their own, but when they sign together there’s a unique energy that’s created. It’s a talent that will keep them in demand for years without a doubt.
So “Stay Gold” has been released, and it’s another decent album. There’s no track here that is as good as the two I mentioned from the last album, but “Cedar Lane” is quite good. It’s a more traditional country angle that I think they should explore a bit more. I’d love them to do a more stripped down country-folk album that’s more akin to Gillian Welch, than the glossy approach that they’ve employed on this album. The Honky Tonk vibe on “Heaven Knows” is just the wrong vibe for them. If I was the master of the universe I’d force them to record a whole album at Third Man Records for Jack White, because the Blue Series single that they did with him in 2011 is stellar.
Rather than link to a track from this album, I’m linking to a version of Bright Eyes’s “Lua” that they sang on earlier this year, because it's one of my alltime favorite songs, and this might now be my favorite version of it.
Posted by Tambe