L.A.’s We Are The West releases a new album March 30, called The Golden Shore. Formed in a shipping container on a sheep farm in Holland, the band began as a duo, performing in an abandoned convent in Brooklyn, prior to returning to California.
Once back in sunny SoCal, the band expanded into an experimental folk collective made up of Brett Hool on vocals and guitar, John Kibler on vocals and stand-up bass, and Elizabeth Goodfellow on vocals and drums.
The album contains 11 tracks. “Siren” rides a measured folk tune that assumes a progressive-lite feel. The song moves on the throb of the bass, as the vocals—pensive and melancholic—float overhead. The title track opens with the dark thrum of the bass, followed by mellow harmonic flavors that resemble the song of a whale. Radiant vocals and strings add luminous colors.
“For Me, For You” brightens things up, providing an upbeat British-flavored tune reminiscent of the Moody Blues crossed with the Kinks. Glowing horns add smoldering accents to the flow of the music. One of the best songs on the album is “Sea of Light,” a blues-textured tune with an alt-rock vibe. The music emanates a mellow jauntiness that’s attractive.
Other remarkable songs include “Crops,” which reminds me of a Bob Dylan tune, a mish mash of rock and country flavors that work well. The dreamy folk tune called “Tonight’s Tonight” rumbles quietly on top of the bass, a delicate guitar, and a delightful harmonica. Hool’s voice is rich and evocative on this tune.
Another good tune is “Luck of the Sailor,” a bubbling country folk tune with an infectious groove and expressive vocals. I love the saw of the fiddle in this tune and the sparkling guitar.
The Golden Shore dishes up a sweet coalescence of sound with that of space, combining the two into a flavorful concoction that’s easy to listen to.