2019, Music

Two Hands (2019) by Big Thief

Another band I’ve never heard of that I’m listening to for the first time and listening to a mid-career record. (Their fourth, it seems.)

Lenker’s voice is an acquired taste. But I will say that, at her most strident, she does sound fairly classically indie rock, which makes it easier. I feel like I am getting used to her enough but I will never love her as a singer, I suspect.

The music is pretty middle-of-the-road indie rock most of the time. It does threaten to break out on occasion, which are the parts that work best for me. The good thing is there is muscle behind these songs which is something that isn’t always the case with this kind of music. It also helps that Linker is willing to dial up the intensity with the music. Whether or not I like her voice, I do think this is important to make this all work.

Sometimes I listen to indie rock and I’m pretty underwhelmed by the band. There were so many indie rock bands that were just competent for a while. I think Big Thief are a good band qua band and that really helps my appreciation of the songs. The record does a good job of capturing there sound as a band which is something that plenty of indie records don’t get right. I also appreciate a good jam. The jam sells me on the band, you know?

I think the mix of strong songs and performances really does overcome my dislike of Lenker’s voice. For my ears, it becomes another instrument because everything else works well enough. I was just listening to some Canadian indie rock with a singer I didn’t like where it didn’t quite work for me because the music around that guy’s voice didn’t work as well. The comparison is instructive for me.


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