Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Ginger Envelope - 'Invitation Air'

Some of the best American music is coming out of Georgia right now, whether it be metal, indie, or, in the case of the Ginger Envelope, country. The five-piece, aided by a few friends, crafted a solid alt-country album called Invitation Air. Calling to mind Mazzy Star’s Americana cool and the quieter moments of George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass, Invtiation Air breezes by in an easy half-hour.

The record has a warm, homey feel to it. It’s studio-quality, but it feels like a live performance from a couple of friends. Patrick Carey’s raspy, almost androgynous vocals match the mellow playing nicely, and his interplay with backing vocalist Page Campbell works well. This sort of folksy country is experiencing a comeback with the kids these days thanks to acts like Mumford & Sons – soaring harmonies, gentle guitars, and the presence of a banjo.

Unlike Mumford, though, the Ginger Envelope never attempt rocking out. Air moseys on by without much fanfare, which works for and against it. The record never tries on a disingenuous pose, but it also never deviates from its set path. Opener “Turn Into Tempests” gently rolls along. Middle track “Pinned Down” gently rolls along. Closer “Invitation Air” gently rolls along.

Still, it’s hard to hate Invitation Air, simply because it’s a beautiful record. The lyrics are pleasant. Matt Stoessel’s pedal steel adds a shimmering layer to songs that are already pretty dreamy. This album is good for the beach and the bed in equal measure.

No comments: