The Avett Brothers’ breakthrough album, last year’s Emotionalism, was a work whose broad influences were felt throughout and whose quiet ambition made it both huge and intimate at the same time. The Second Gleam, while keeping to the Avett’s signature sound, doesn’t share its predecessor’s breadth. Instead, it focuses on intimacy and gentle folkiness. Not a single track could be described as rousing, yet it manages to rouse the soul with its simple honesty. As ever, the Avetts prove to be deceptively fine musicians who aren’t afraid to put themselves into their music in a way that reaches heights both technical and emotional. The album focuses on personal themes (the past, family, love), yet manages to express them in ways that they can be personal for each listener in his own way.