“I wanted you to know that I can see a light in you, and it will only grow,” Canadian psychedelic folk band Loving sing on their sophomore album, Any Light, released today on Last Gang Records/MNRK.
There is certainly an optimism to writing an album that deals at every turn with light, so that “any light” is a welcome light. “When I looked at all these songs together,” Jesse Henderson, half of the 70’s-reminiscent band said, “I realized that the concept of light was threaded throughout the album. For me light signifies awareness or insight, which ties into how many of these songs document a shift in perspective.”
“I’ve been waiting so long / how I had it all wrong / Never have I seen you / with open eyes / With any light,” is how they open the album on the title track, starting the album in the darkness of misunderstanding. “Now that I see you / I can renew my love.” And the album just brightens from that point, like the sun climbing the sky and giving light to the whole land. “Loving helps,” is the succinct but potent bio that they have up on their Spotify, and this album is an attempt to shine the light of love as they see it, both in intricate psychedelic music and earnest, compelling poetry.
“I’ve been following your footsteps / I’ve been trying just to be / like a melody you sing,” they sing half way through the album, showing, as Henderson explained, an expanding perspective on the people around them. Or as they put it on the optimistic next song, “Make me your favorite cup / each night bottoms up / Drink me down like wine.” “I was never meant to be just mine.” That’s any band’s wish and credo, right? The earnestness of the lyrics is met by a commitment to expertly crafted music, with plenty of instrumental interludes that include trumpet, timpani, vibraphone, strings and organ, alongside Henderson and David Parry’s soothing guitar work. At times they recall the Fleet Foxes and at times bands like The Byrds, in both their pastoral lyrics and their pleasing, pastoral sound.
It is a fairly quick offering at half an hour and ten tracks, but offers their listeners music to lighten the load and illuminate the path ahead. You can imagine that anyone looking for sounds and themes that throwback to the seventies, when earnestness was in vogue and musical composition was paramount, would rejoice to hear an album of consistently strong and compelling songs like we find on Any Light. “Catching light in your palm / the very image / of the calm waters / that feed into,” they sing to close out the album. With songs, as intricate as light on water, they offer a rich tapestry of songs that are easy on the ears and act as food for the hungry soul.
Order Any Light by Loving HERE
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