Monday, January 7, 2013

I'm Across I'm Ashore With Nat Johnson

Nat Johnson and The Figureheads are an interesting clash of ideas. On one side Nat sounds like she's straight out of the 90's and on the other she's a delicate singer songwriter. Here album I'm Across I'm Ashore is the battleground where these two sides compete for attention. It's 90's alternative vs folk in a ladder match of music. Who wins is entirely up to you and your ears.

Her alternative side is something special. Nat's voice is so similar to folks like Tonya Donnelly, Veruca Salt, and the like; it's sweet and authoritative. Her band trounces along with her as fizzy riffs and post-grungy dynamics plow through the songs leaving a trail of old school indie rock in it's wake. I really enjoyed these moments as they're catchy, fun, and really quite good.

On the other side of the coin is Nat Johnson's delicate side. It's the side where she taps into her inner folkie and meanders across songs in an unassuming manner. This is the fragile and sweet angle of the band and while it's charming I much prefer the fizzy energetic side. The softer side of Nat is a bit too gentle, fey, and acoustic for me but I do appreciate the breathers that these odes to quiet provide.

Quiet or loud I'm Across, I'm Ashore is a fine album that takes the best of two worlds and makes them live in harmony.

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