DAILY SHUFFLE: Band of Horses – “Evening Kitchen”
I’ve been struggling to organize and distinguish my own biases ever since Band of Horses put out Infinite Arms in May; I just can’t seem to figure out where what frontman Ben Bridwell called “the first Band of Horses record” ranks in their discography. The songwriting is certainly more refined, and the musicianship more impressive than the first two releases, the nearly flawless Everything All The Time and its doppelganger, Cease To Begin. But is it more charming? Bridwell and his Horses have built a dedicated fanbase, poked the mainstream surface, and nabbed ad deals with their almost unbearably endearing take on country-pop (I defy anyone to argue that makes less sense than ‘indie-folk’…).
Songs like “The Funeral,” “The First Song,” and “St. Augustine” might have been more democratic than the cuts on Infinite Arms, but Band of Horses 2.0 continues to advocate for fireplaces, novels, and flannel pants with songs like “Evening Kitchen.” The album’s resident lullaby ollows the minimal “St. Augustine” model: two nectarous voices, one guitar, and no picks. Infinite Arms‘s biggest asset might be its departure from the band’s debut and sophomore twin records, but here’s to hoping Bridwell never completely abandons his winning formula that has made Band of Horses one of the most lovable pop bands on the planet.