“A folk step forward”
The Cave Singers return, folk goodness and all, with No Witch, an upgraded and more varied follow up to 2009’s comforting Welcome Joy. Though still filled with finger picked guitar and lead singer Pete Quirk’s gruff yet silky vocals, on No Witch, The Cave Singers experiment with different tempos and instruments, adding another dimension to the trio’s soft, euphonic tracks.
The opening song, “Gifts and The Raft,” may not sound too different from past releases at first, but the interlaced string solos compliment the subtle harmonies of guitarist Derek Fundesco and drummer Marty Lund, often underemphasized on their earlier albums. “Swim Club” brings in The Cave Singers’ knack for charming storytelling from years past, while “Falls” tries out a blues bass and gives Quirk range to attempt some Tom Waits-style groaning. Nowhere is The Cave Singers’ new experimentation more obvious, however, than on “Outer Realms,” with clear Far East influences and perhaps a bit of homage to The Doors’ “Waiting for the Sun.”
No Witch sees The Cave Singers’ reaching outside their flannel-and-beard comfort zone, and the result is a definitively more interesting and diverse album than their previous releases. (Jagjaguwar)
Produced by Randall Dunn & The Cave Singers // Mastered by Mell Dettmer