Our Endless Numbered Daysby Iron and Wine
Much like kindred spirit Will Oldham -- who's hidden behind monikers ranging from Palace Music to Bonnie Prince Billy -- Miami-based Sam Beam has chosen to cloak his rustic folk musings in the guise of a "band" called Iron & Wine. But unless you get bogged down in the semantics, it's virtually impossible not to get drawn in by the songs on this, the second Iron & Wine album. Beam has a thing for Appalachiana -- as evidenced by the cryptically spiritual, banjo-laced "Cinder and Smoke" -- but he doesn't let geography limit his meanderings. "Teeth in the Grass," for instance, doesn't alter the instrumentation noticeably, but the arrangement brings to mind a foray into the Far East, specifically Japan. In contrast to 2002's near-naked The Creek Drank the Cradle, this outing finds Beam broadening his palette a bit -- adding his sister Sara as background vocalist on a handful of songs and sliding a light carpet of drums beneath the mournful "Free Until They Cut Me Down." At the core, however, the songs remain the same -- plaintive and pessimistic, sadly beautiful until the (bittersweet) end.
- Release Date:
- Sub Pop
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