Thursday, November 10, 2011


Coming together like Arcade Fire mingling with Fleet Foxes, this new Montreal group  takes the epic sound of the former and adds the acoustic, harmony-drenched anthems of the latter.  Woodshedding for six months resulted in this debut album, expanding the boundaries of today's folk music.  It's funny, new bands used to get together for months in garages, getting to know each other with their electrics and amps.  Now, it's more likely they are in (metaphorical) barns and old churches, trying out cellos and different keyboard sounds and how their voices blend with echo and effects.  Helping out all over the album are members of the red-hot Barr Brothers.

The words are a lot better, that's for sure.  F & the H present a sweeping series of songs which tackle a lot of regret, leaving, and sad observation:  "We were stuck in traffic for most of our lives".  There's no bitterness here, more acknowledgement, and we get to feel more mellow than down, largely thanks to the beauty of the melodies and instruments.  The wonderfully-recorded songs feature glowing voices, ringing pianos, and shimmering strings.  It's like the mixing board had buttons they could push that said "gentle", "bright" and "beautiful".

The group is in the East right now to promote Residents, and let people check them out.  You'll find them appearing with Paper Beat Scissors at:

Nov. 10 Baba's Lounge, Charlottetown
Nov. 11 Cafe Aberdeen, Moncton
Nov. 12 Wilser's Room, Fredericton

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