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Owls By Nature - The Forgotten And The Brave

Owls By Nature
The Forgotten And The Brave
by Abir “Vladimir” Kalai at 17 November 2014, 9:07 PM

A second album by the Canada-based band “Owls By Nature”, has seen the light, with a bunch of jolly folk instruments and a youthful soft rock tenor range, making it -par excellence- one of the albums you'd feel delighted listening to at a jazz lounge. Succulently vibe-raising with eleven shorty tracks, transiting from lively folk based on fingering, to a tempo dropped rock ballade style mainly consisting of chords, maybe, except “Would”, an acoustic pause amidst the electric rage. Most of the time, all instruments play a supplementing role with mainly flat root notes while the vocals and the drums take the lead seeing like background music, yet the lyrics and the emotion-packed performance of Ian McIntosh was enough to make you guess about each track, whether cheerful or morose, best depicted by “Wrigley Field” or better “Darkness”, both made into music videos, the latter sublimely illustrating the struggle of an emotionally unavailable artist (seemingly, of course!).

The main characteristic of this album –as mentioned above- is its smoothly progressive diversity from one track to another, while the melodica adds a touch similar to that of a 30’s Hammond organ, the banjo crafted country-oriented tracks. “Brothers” even simulates an early rock ’n roll song, or better mention “So Close”, where the guitar, the lap steel and the banjo broke the chord pattern (pseudo-jazz guitar) with the employ of fingering, in contrast with the intense chords and the guitar solo of “Back Right Down”. Further, only the “rock” tracks were endowed with piano passages - familiar for this genre – which makes a wise move, as the band opted for easy listening rather than placing an uncompromised bet on glaring riffs.

Technically speaking, this album is not Olympic level but it has what it takes to leave a good impression, not only to a rock/metal fan, but all kinds of listeners. Somehow it didn't only catch my ears, but something way beyond.

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Brothers
2. Little Birds
3. Darkness
4. Oh Alberta
5. So Close
6. Dancing Girl
7. Would
8. Wrigley Field
9. Honesty
10. Back Right Down
Lineup:
Ian McIntosh - Vocals, Guitar
Cory D - Banjo, Keys, Vocals
Doc De Groot - Lead Guitar, Lap Steel, Mandolin, Vocals
Fred Brenton - Drums, Melodica
Mike Nash - Bass, Vocals
Record Label: Gunner Records
     


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