What happens when you cross melodic folk-rock with acoustic hippie jams, throw in some classical as well as classic rock influences, and add in a few dashes of modern indie? Well, even after listening to this album several times, I still have absolutely no clue. What I DO know, however, is that I like it. A lot. The Lonely H have seemingly created what I thought to be an extinct item in the modern world of music: an original album. Although each aspect of the album is fairly easy to pick out, when mixed all together, it creates a distinctly unique blend of sound, setting it well apart from their "classic rock" and indie-rock contemporaries.
The song "The Drought" alone is enough to leave any listener in an awe-stricken stupor. It contains such a diverse amalgam of sound that it essentially makes it impossible to place a single genre on it. However, unlike many other genre-bending modern artists/bands, the Lonely H does much more than simply juxtaposing a few different styles of music and dispersing them throughout the album. While each song has its own distinctive sound, they each also contain the same general principles of sonic blending. Each song seems to have been very carefully musically crafted, with a pinpoint attention to detail.
Although Hair is strong in virtually every aspect throughout the entire album, it certainly comes as a bit of an acquired taste. It really took me a few listens to start getting into, so keep that in mind when listening, and never dismiss it upon first hearing alone. Musically, there were only a few small pieces I found troubling, but although the pieces may have been slightly bent, they still fit perfectly into the rest of the puzzle. The vocals falter at a few points as well, but in terms of an overall piece of work, Mark Fredson delivers a strong performance throughout the duration of Hair.
The most intriguing thing about the newest product from The Lonely H is the diversity in melody. Most bands seem to find a melodic pattern that suits them and write their songs to fit around that particular pattern. This album, however, seems to have been written so that the melodies each fit the distinct songs they were written for, and creates an interesting mash-up of different sounds to compliment the already vast diversity in terms of musical genres. This sort of songwriting is a rare gem in today's "market" and sets The Lonely H apart from nearly all of their contemporaries.
Overall, the album delivers a solid (nearly) forty minutes of everything from mellowed out chill songs to faster paced rock jams that won't leave any listener disappointed. Songs to keep an ear on: "The Drought", "Captain", and "Yeah, Yeah".
Review by: Brian Anderson