Friday, 23 January 2015

Album Review - Silver City Sorrow

Silver City Sorrow 
by The Wild Comforts (available now)

We don’t review a lot of country music on this little blog of ours, which is kind of strange, considering both Matt and I have such a strong love of the sad song, because everyone knows the sad song makes us insanely happy and after all, country is the sound of heartbreak. Alas, not a lot of country music makes its way into our lives on a regular basis, but when it’s as good as the sounds of The Wild Comforts, I (not so) secretly hope for more and more.

Having been doing their country-fied thing since back in ’11, I’m kind of upset I’ve only just heard the sweet sounds of these four Melbournians. Where have I been the last four years? Clearly asleep, it seems. I was awoken by the soft strumming of guitar on ‘Broken Hill’, the first track from Silver City Sorrow. It’s a gentle introduction to the ten tracks that make up their second album, a classic sound which makes me sway like the best and wonder if it’s about the town of that name or a less literal broken hill, but either way there’s a little bit of sadness in there with words about missing people and places and the slowest, saddest beat and I just know I’m going to love this album if it’s all this soulful.

And it is. The super catchy words and harmonica on ‘Bombshell Motel’ makes me wanna hit the open road, the mid tempo country swag and references to shared women, wine and The Grateful Dead on ‘Easy To Pretend’ are delightful, the sing-a-long and make me wanna clap my hands and tap my feet rhythm of ‘Better Off Dead’ is addictive and the perfectly indie American with an Australian accent country twang across the entire album is just perfect.

But it’s the tender notes and sweet as honey harmonies on the single ‘Cossette’ that really won me over, because that’s the one that reached that crazy part of my brain that loves the depression in a good country sad song and loves the words that are more truthful than I’d like to admit; “there is ecstasy in the agony of love, have you had your fill, have you had enough, there is ecstasy in the agony of love…” It’s these kind of combinations of keys, guitars and words that I adore about that country thing, because there’s always something deliciously lonely about the sound which wraps me up in all its sadness and makes me completely comfortable.

So I might have been asleep for the last four years, but I’m going to make up for it now with my newest fave Australian country rock people. They know how to strum those guitars, hit those notes and create those sways that awesome country does. They also know how to do the sad song, which makes me so happy. Bring on the sad song, bring on The Wild Comforts and bring on the smiles.

Jo Michelmore gives Silver City Sorrow three and a half Dixie Chicks heads out of five…  

The Wild Comforts are just about to wrap up their Silver City Sorrow Tour with only a couple of shows left. Best head over to the gig guide and see if you can catch them live! 

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