Review Summary: "Solace my game/Solace my game/It stars you"
Every now and again, I find it necessary to listen to an album such as For Emma, For Ever Ago
. Such an album allows you to experience what people of many religions strive for their entire lives: utter oneness with the universe; inner peace; Nirvana. Bon Iver skillfully crafts a masterpiece that has the power to tame even the most vicious of beasts, to talk down even the most determined from the high ledge at which they intended on ending their existence. Whether it be after a stressful day at school or work, an intense fight with your significant other, or just that feeling that you're all alone in the world and there is no knight in shining armor coming to your rescue, this album is most definitely a good place to start.
"Skinny Love" chronicles an ex-lover who presumably broke it off with the singer. I like this song because it is so honest, even brutally so. At the end of the song, he asks: “Who will love you?/Who will fight?” The singer brutally lays it bare: this woman was more in love with fighting than the singer. He bluntly tells her that nobody else will be able to put up with her, that he doubts anyone else will be able to look past all her problems and see her for who she is. Though she may be imperfect, nobody ever is. Every living human has something which lowers them from that prestigious pedestal of those deemed ‘perfect,’ because love is not about finding the ‘perfect' man or woman; rather its about finding that person that you are perfect with.
Bon Iver's emotions are poured from his organic folk style of music. The bulk of the songs are made of up of guitar and his rich vocals. The guitar work is simple, not spectacular, but it is somewhat the par for the genre. The lyrics and how the lyrics are conveyed however is what makes this album different than others of the genre. Bon Iver's vocals are also credited to the beautiful soul behind the music. They are easygoing and breezy, like catching up with an old friend. In the emotionally raw "Creature Fear," during the chorus, his vocals exhibit the feelings in his heart with a hopeful tone. Though some albums may contain songs that are overly robust and in your face, For Emma, Forever Ago
manages to steer clear of such things. The songs mange to reach the listener in a simple, subtle way that is easy to digest and is by no means too much at once.
The end result of all these pieces strung together is a touching album that manages to sweep you away in emotion, but not suffocate you in it. This album would appeal to fans of the folk genre, or those seeking to get into it since it is an easily accessible listen. For Emma, Forever Ago
is one of the best debut albums I have ever heard and Bon Iver is definitely a band to keep an eye on. Personally, this is probably my favorite folk album, if not my favorite album ever. An easy to recommend classic to anyone who calls themselves a music lover.
The Wolves (Act I and II)