Tin Sparrow – Fair & Verdant Woods
Tin Sparrow are in good company. They’re the supports on Boy & Bear’s tour. Their sophomore EP was produced by Liam Judson i.e. the frontman of Belles Will Ring and one of their older songs was produced by Mark Myers (ex The Middle East). Whether this is a curious case of serendipity, divine intervention or just because, this Sydney indie-folk quartet has elements of all three of these groups permeating their sound.
After being together as a band for just six months (a little longer if you consider that a few members had been jamming together for years) they’ve kicked numerous goals. Having built a following and releasing a promising debut, they’re back. This offering, their second EP, was produced in a mere week in Sydney, proving that it’s all about quality, not quantity.
My Own shimmers like gold and is all sunshine and lollipops. The track is smooth and sweet with soaring, boy-girl vocals courtesy of Matt Amery and Sonja Van Hummel. It also has a 60s-feel and when coupled with whistling and toe-tapping goodness is a dead ringer for a hit by Boy & Bear.
The word Azzuro looks so similar to the Italian one for blue but this track is anything but – the single has some dreamy Cloud Control-esque pop and the kind of harmonies usually synonymous with Fleet Foxes. The following track, Sides, sounds like Mumford & Sons while Bricks is another ballad, but one that manages to sound purely angelic despite being about the difficult period post-breakup. Some wistful feelings about a bad relationship are also found in Hector Myola where George Harrison’s style of guitar playing is morphed to incorporate the vibe found in the wild west, particularly a saloon that is out in the desert and isolated enough for the tumbleweeds to blow past.
The EP shows that Tin Sparrow are in good company indeed. They often sound like they’re sitting amongst musical friends and influences in the countryside with many a cup of warm brew. Fair & Verdant Woods is about scorched Aussie summers and rustic homes that back out onto an Aussie bush that is frequently majestic but often tough. The songs – like this terrain – are polished but not so perfect to exclude things that are a little earthy and wild. In all, it’s one cohesive set of alluring and mature indie folk that is emotionally charged and gorgeous in its own right.