Feathers’ self titled debut is an odd one. It’s a strange combination of freak-folk and psychadelica, if you were to combine Animal Collective and Fairport Convention then you’d come out with an album sounding extremely similar to Feathers
. If I listened to this album without knowing when it was released then I’d still think that it was made in the late 60's just because of the laid-back hippy atmosphere that the music gives off. It’s unfortunate that Feathers weren’t around during the psychadelic/hippy era because they would have fit right in with all of those ***ed up potheads.
is a tranquil, peaceful, and soothing listen drenched with psychadelic acoustics and textured vocal melodies. There really isn’t much to octet, their music consists of finger picked acoustics, multiple backing vocalists, and a whole lot of drugs. A lot of acid-folk albums are soothing yet they can also get extremely dull if you’re not in the right state of mind. That’s definitely not the case with this album as it can be very relaxing and laid-back while still being interesting and exciting. Past the Moon
represents the whole album perfectly as it features both lush acoustic arrangements and trippy backing vocals. To Each His Own
sounds like it could be coming from an African tribe as it’s propelled by a compelling drum beat and some eerie guitars. Almost every track sounds similar to one another but the atmosphere doesn’t get boring because the music has such a surreal and trippy feel to it.
Possibly the greatest aspect of Feathers
is the fact that it creates vivid imagery without being overblown. It’s amazing how a few vocalists and acoustic guitars can create such a druggy atmosphere, when listening to the music it immediately reminds me of the good ol’ 60's. I can just see the octet sitting there playing their guitars effortlessly as they smoke some dope. The opening track, Old Black Hat With a Dandelion Flower
hypnotizes you and once you get sucked in to the whimsical feel of the music then there’s no turning back.
Although I enjoy Feathers
I also think that it is flawed in a couple of different ways. If you’re not a fan of acid-folk then this won’t be converting you anytime soon. The music has already been played before about forty years ago by many drug-addicted hippies. You also have to be in the right state of mind, if you want to listen to something with at least an ounce of energy or liveliness then avoid this at all costs.
While Feathers may not be the next Incredible String Band they are certainly fun to listen to. Although I only listen to this album when I want to relax it’s extremely effective given the circumstances. Perfectly balancing thick acoustic melodies with textured vocals Feathers
is one of the better folk albums to come out in quite some time.