An entertaining mix of folk and rock, the Wooden Sky's newest effort is chock full of thoughtful lyrics, and catchy melodies.
Local alt-country rockers the Wooden Sky‘s latest release, Every Child a Daughter, Every Moon a Sun, is out today on Black Box Recordings. Once again, the band wisely teamed up with producer Howard Bilerman, whose influence lends itself to singer Gavin Gardiner’s stories of urban heartbreak in the guise of traditional country melodies.
Most of the songs on the album adhere to predominantly folk and country influences, although there are nice experimental rock flourishes. The Wooden Sky seem to have caught on to how the basic structure of country songs aren’t always that different from rock songs, and blend the genres well when the tracks start to get louder.
Gardiner’s vocal breaks contrast nicely with a beautiful electric guitar duet in the opener, “City of Light.” We loved the outro to “Bald, Naked, and Red,” and the breakdown during “It Gets Old To Be Alone”—our favourite track on the album. We also liked “I’m Your Man,” the album’s climax track, which reminded us of a Figure 8-era Elliott Smith tune disguised as a mainstream country track. The chilling noisy ending segues bipolar-ly into a reprise of the album’s earlier track, “Angelina,” which resonates more hauntingly the second time around.
While Every Child‘s tunes occasionally veer towards the obvious—an effect of its country roots—the imagery in the lyrics offer a nice counterpoint to the music’s minimalist simplicity. Overall, the album is a worthwhile foray into widening the overlap between rock and country music. We love when the Wooden Sky gets a bit heavier, but appreciate the beauty of Every Child‘s softer songs, too. This is a good album to listen to amidst the stresses of post-reading week schoolwork catchup, or the frustrations of waiting for a streetcar.