Good Old War
Good Old War


3.5
great

Review

by Tyler Fisher EMERITUS
June 1st, 2010 | 27 replies | 15,032 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The folk revivalist's summer album of 2010, it is hard not to enjoy the warm tones of Good Old War's self-titled sophomore album.

Good Old War reportedly composed and recorded their self-titled sophomore album in a cabin of the Pocono Mountains in northeastern Pennsylvania. For those unfamiliar with the intricacies of Pennsylvanian geography, the Pocono Mountains are a subrange of the Appalachian Mountains, and while seemingly isolated, stand only two hours from northern New Jersey and New York City by car. This juxtaposition of complete isolation and proximity to a bustling cultural center encapsulates Good Old War’s sound perfectly. The trio might seem like another Fleet Foxes imitation, lurking on mountainsides searching for that perfect introspective catharsis, but Good Old War are much too worldly to fall into that niche. Where Fleet Foxes might sing, “Lie to me if you will/At the top of Beringer Hill,” Good Old War demonstrates an awareness of their cosmopolitan audience in the real world by singing (on their first album), “I’m going to Coney Island to have myself a dog.” Trapped inside the warmth of their vocal harmonies, the deftness of their guitar progressions, and the precision of their uptempo rhythms is the energy of youth.

The album has three tracks titled “Good”, “Old”, and “War”, bookending the album with “Good” and “War” and placing “Old” in the middle of the album. They are short interlude songs, either leftover ideas or interesting little riffs that could not be expanded into full songs. The opening track is lush, demonstrating the group’s ability to compose beautiful vocal harmonies and fun, bouncy rhythms. Aesthetically, the track seems to transport the listener to that Pocono Mountain cabin--or The Shire, take your pick--as the group warms up their voices and instruments. It’s inviting, warm, and a perfect demonstration of everything the group is capable of without actually giving anything away.

“Good” gives nothing away because despite being an folk trio with limited instrumental capabilities, Good Old War manages to put out a lot of tracks without diluting the sound too much. As the band made an attempt to have every song on the album playable live, the variety on the album is little. Yet, the difference from quiet acoustic number “My Name’s Sorrow” to 1960s-influenced pop piece “Woogie Woody’s Hood Boogie”, from the simple “My Own Sinking Ship” to the infectious “Making My Life”, which grows organically from a drum groove to include some of the best harmonies on the album and an almost danceable groove, is quite striking. This, coupled with the fact that nearly every song on the album is under three minutes, make the album digestible and enjoyable from start to finish.

Good Old War is a rising star in the indie folk world, and consistency is their strong suit, as every song on the fifteen-track album ranges from good to fantastic. The listener is likely to come away singing the chorus of “My Own Sinking Ship” or “World Watching”, imagining the vocal harmonies beneath them. And the release date couldn’t be better; Good Old War is the indie fan’s feel-good summer album of 2010.



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user ratings (119)
Chart.
3.6
great
other reviews of this album
kevin234 (3.5)
Good Old War keeps it good...


Comments:Add a Comment 
mmfarva
June 1st 2010



1352 Comments


Good review. I got his for $3.99 on Amazon and really enjoy it, though I haven't really delved into it too much.

Bandido
June 1st 2010



816 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Listened to the stream and liked it but so far not as good as their first

Lucid
Contributing Reviewer
June 1st 2010



7018 Comments


Their debut was fairly enjoyable so I might check this out.

Digging: Braid - No Coast

AlexTM510
June 1st 2010



1398 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

i told myself i wouldn't get this but the 2.99 amazon deal was hard to turn down so i will give this a listen nice review

alachlahol
June 1st 2010



7471 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

yea no shit $3.00? buying it right now. may as well buy Only Way To Be Alone as well it's $5.00

NeutralThunder12
June 2nd 2010



8742 Comments


I may enjoy this, Ive been meaning to get more indie/folk stuff. Good review man.

acorncheese
June 2nd 2010



7119 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Only heard the stream so far. Must get this.

iamSeraph
June 2nd 2010



857 Comments


I dislike folk in general but love minus the bear which are listed under "members also liked...". Shall I check it out or not? :/

Digging: Everley - The Tyger and the Lamb

thediamondcanopy
June 2nd 2010



510 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

^yessir, check it out.

dylantheairplane
June 4th 2010



2164 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

this sounds like something I would like. Downloading now

Zizzer
June 5th 2010



915 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This looks good. I will investigate!

Iai
Emeritus
June 6th 2010



3553 Comments


lol, I love how the blurb gets cut off on the main page. I agree it will hard not to enjoy the war!

Iai
Emeritus
June 6th 2010



3553 Comments


oh my god and i just realised the band are called good old war

mind = blown

FlawedPerfection
Emeritus
June 6th 2010



2806 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Totally intentional

Oceanus
June 6th 2010



877 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Curious about this.

ThyCrossAwaits
June 11th 2010



3043 Comments


you should watch the glasshouse session on YouTube. the singer is hilarious.

El_Goodo
June 16th 2010



1008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Loving this album right now, checked out the first album after I saw this review actually and after thoroughly enjoying that album I got this one. I love "That's Some Dream" and "Sneaky Louise."

acorncheese
June 19th 2010



7119 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

They were sooooo fantastic live tonight.

Zizzer
June 19th 2010



915 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

A friend told me they're great live too. I'll keep an eye out for them.

acorncheese
August 27th 2010



7119 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Much more solid than Only Way To Be Alone. No denying that.



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