Friday, January 22, 2010

The Pinecones - Sage

I think one of them knows something that the others don't.

The Pinecones, formerly Brent Randall & His Pinecones, have a new album. The 15-track record entitled "Sage" pays homage to tea parties, gentlemanly gentlemen and shoemakers. It's the result of a collaboration between Randall, Brian O'Reilly, (Meligrove Band, Their Majesties), Paul Linklater (Bindiband), and Joel Goguen (Laura Peek & The Winning Hearts). Each member wrote and sang their own songs, and it all comes together in this amazingly cohesive and charming piece that sounds like it came from a better time.

After however long of listening to songs and albums with an obviously insane amount production and polish, Sage was a nice breath of fresh air. The Pinecones embrace a DIY, lo-fi sound that completely compliments their songwriting styles. The opening track and also the title track, Sage, will immediately locate you in a time that isn't quite past, and isn't quite present, but some bizarre amalgamation that takes from the best of the two. In this case I suppose it would be the stylistic psychedelic whimsy of the 60s, and the modern appreciation for the understated. Whenever it is, it sounds like a time when complementary colours pallets are encouraged, tambourines are meant to be in the foreground, snapping is on par with clapping, and structured facial hair is THE thing. Past, present, both? For a much better sense of what kind of atmosphere that The Pinecones manage to create, better than my rambles of past and present can describe, listen to the subtle drama on I Think You're Blind (Starlit One) or to the fun and bouncy piano track, Mr. Shoemaker Man, literally about how amazing being a shoemaker would be. Also, read a little track by track writeup that the band did over on mySpace.

The Pinecones - Sage (mp3) (amazon) (available on iTunes Feb. 9th)

You can catch The Pinecones in Toronto on Feb. 5th at the Magpie, or on March 5th at The Garrison. They recently moved into the city from their hometown of Halifax, so let's give them a nice welcome, shall we?

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