Review : Red House Painters - Red House Painters I
SputnikmusicDespite my steadfast belief that this is a perfect album, even I can’t be blinded by the fact that the Red House Painters’ sophomore effort can almost, at times, be a chore to listen to. Difficulty isn’t a hindrance of Red House Painters I (or (Rollercoaster), whichever is your preference), but this isn’t an easy listen: this album can be cripplingly depressing. However, much like depression, there are alleviating moments of beauty to be found after and within the darkness, and it’s worth delving within RHP I’s considerable mass to find such moments.
Thankfully, RHP I eases into its girth by starting out with its most accessible track. “Grace Cathedral Park” is a relatively optimistic and upbeat folk track, despite lyrics that suggest otherwise: Kozelek yearns mournfully of a past relationship, striking familiar feelings of loss that resonate long after the track’s four minutes. From there, the music starts to parallel Kozelek’s depression: “Down Through” is a barren, straightforward track that features similar themes of yearning and loss that were found in "Grace Cathedral Park" . This time, this feeling is amplified by the music, which consists of nothing more than someone (assumedly Kozelek) absentmindedly strumming an acoustic. A feeling of loneliness and solitude is easily struck within the listener here, from both the subtle emotion of Kozelek’s voice and the starkness of his playing....full text
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