Long Before the Light
Soft Day Records SD-003 2015
Hill music straight from the heart of a City
If I’m perfectly honest this type of American Folk/Country music normally leaves me cold; especially the fiddle playing which can often sound like nails being scratched along a blackboard; and I felt that way about opening track, the instrumental Cheese Closet the first couple of times I heard it; but out of professionalism and courtesy to the band who sent me the album, I’ve persevered and gone on to derive a lot of pleasure from the rest of the tracks.
Had the chirpy track which follows, Past the Fog opened the album it would have been a much easier listen (honest!).
Baring in mind the very traditional Folk music on offer here it’s a mind-bender to find that the trio hail from Seattle and not some log cabin community high up a mountain in Appalachia; but they do and perhaps that urban edge comes across in various shadows; especially on Zenith Point and possibly the quaintly beautiful Home, which features the delightful voice of Sami Braman and a wailing violin.
If I have to pick a favourite song; and I always do it would have to be The Way We Sung with its nod to the Gypsy Jazz of players like Stefan Grappelli, who was a favourite of my Fathers.
There’s not a lot else to say apart from The Onlies – Sami Braman, Riley Calcagno and Leo Shannon have known each other since being toddlers together and played music together for ten years, and now at the tender age of 16 (yes; they are all only sixteen years old!) they are releasing a very mature and highly skilled second album.
US Release – 3rd April 2015
UK Release – 13th April 2015