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Sundowner
Bethesda: Dreamtiger & Other Tails

Dreamtiger & Other Tails

(Bethesda)
Label(s): 
Genre: 
Release Date: 
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Grade:
A
Format: 
EP
Tracks: 
5

Let’s be honest, the indie market has been over crowded for sometime now. It seems like almost every day a new band pops up in that particular market and nine times out of ten they sound similar if not identical to at least four or five bands out there doing the same exact thing. Because of this it seems the indie market is narrowed down, as far as judging bands, based on how they deliver their sound, no matter how familiar. Bethesda isn’t a band that I’m going to champion as the next best thing but they at least manage to impress as a unit and manage not to waste much of their foot in the door opportunity.

Lead singer Shanna Delaney reminds me a bit of Zoë Deschenal’s work with She & Him, mixing in a slight rockabilly twang in her vocals and an impressive high register operatic delivery at times. The fact that she is a fantastic singer, for the most part, elevates the brilliance of the bands efforts in the lyrical department. Inside of the CD case you’ll find a removable booklet, small as it may be, which has lyrics for all of the EP’s songs. Flipping through the five pages of lyrics is like flipping through a book of tales. The bands folk edge is accurately defined by their use of lyrics as a narrative for the every day human. Topics covered here are mostly about life in general, through my perspective, from the hard knock truths about life being hard but making the most of it, looking back on those hard times and allowing their faded memory to bring sweetness to the rewards of the now, and when all else fails being able to live within the perfection of our own dreams and fantasies. All of the tracks rate very highly as far as sound, it is an excellently produced album, but the final title track just didn't sit well with me.

The album is a mish mash of what I take as influences from The Sussex Wit to Mumford and Sons to She & Him and more. The 22 minute EP manages to create individualism between the five tracks while somehow tying them all together to weave some sort of tale, again, from my perspective. Fortunately enough the band does have their 2009 self titled EP available for free from their website as well as the entire album available for streaming at Bandcamp. It’s a real opportunity to see weather or not the band makes your cut. For me, I think I’ll be listening to this CD for awhile. Its got enough strength to continue on in my collection. As always final judgment is yours. Enjoy.
 

AJ Garcia
Review by AJ Garcia
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