Words // Scott Pingeton
As you've probably gathered, I've been hopelessly out of touch these past few weeks. I'm finding it difficult to find any time to discover new music, let alone edit and post the 5+ live recordings I have ready to go (promise I'll get those done soon). But sometimes great things fall in your lap, and today was one of those times. A tweet from Jacob Augustine lead me to his bandcamp page, and one of my favorite new music discoveries in the past few months.
Augustine is based in the "northern woods of Maine", and his songs reflect the timbre of that part of the country. Music for deep woods meditation, paddling on a glass-still pond or sunset on the rocky shoreline. Traditional folk is the common thread, around which experimental arrangements are woven.
"Bikini" starts with slow, chanted vocals before opening up into a rousing harmonica and guitar stomp. "God's Guns" features rhythmic percussion and a Middle Eastern melody, but Augustine's dynamic vocals are the highlight. In fact, throughout these four varied songs, it is the lyrics and delivery that keep knocking me on my ass. Augustine delivers each line with such passion, whether hushed or fervent, that I can't help be mesmerized.
The EP, which clocks in around 23 minutes, ends with "Marathon Caribou". It's a breathtaking song, fully orchestrated with strings and haunting doubled vocals. It will draw comparisons to Bon Iver, and is more than strong enough to stand up to those comparisons. This is one of the most accomplished EPs I've heard this year, Jacob Augustine is definitely a songwriter to keep your eye on.
Name your own price and grab the Bikini Island EP is available on Augustine's bandcamp page now. You won't be sorry.