Shearwater: Palo Santo


Vocal dramatics are the essence of Shearwater’s forurth album, Palo Santo, with vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Jonathan Meiburg consistently exposing a forever-fluctuating line between kitten purr and banshee wail. Over subtle, shifting instrumentation, Meiburg is given a runway for flight, floating across dissonent, cresting guitars on "White Waves," or dancing above staccato-plagued keys on "Red Sea, Black Sea."

But the emotion that drives much of Palo Santo is constricting, driving the sombre folk of the title track into a padded-walled room and drawing a  tear from weepy eyed-guitar on "Nobody." Shearwater is still an impressive force on the indie rock scene; one with open arms welcoming listener interaction, whether in the form of a friendly hug or just a good cry.

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