The Errant Charm

Vetiver’s new album, The Errant Charm, whilst leaving behind the folkier sound of their previous albums, delivers an almost perfectly dreamy summer soundtrack. As one of the more successful bands to come out of the New Weird America movement, Vetiver seem to be maturing nicely, going with the flow of the indie evolution towards a more laid back sound, very mellow and very Californian, earning their stripes after having been somewhat overlooked in comparison to other NWA artists like Joanna Newsom. So could it be that the Americans are taking over? Bon Iver, Fleet Foxes, Devendra Banhart and the like are all storming the alternative scene, maybe we (the fans) are calming down as adulthood gets it’s claws into us…

Even the album cover is sunny

Wistful seems to be the best word to describe Vetiver’s fifth album, their second on current label Subpop Records, “a perfect album for a balmy summer’s day” seems to be the general consensus among the critics and as far as I can tell they’re not wrong. Acoustic guitars and muted drums drift along with the lyrics, Andy Cabic’s vocals blending dreamily with the melodies. The whole album is definitively leisurely, listening to it, it’s almost impossible to feel guilty about just lazing around, it’s almost a justification for it.

Wonder Why is the stand out track on this record. Featured as an MPFree on BBC Radio 6 last week, the track is still avalible for free from the band’s website: http://vetiverse.com/. A more upbeat offering, it feels like a road trip in a single song. Pitchfork describes it as a little “world weary” but at the same time optimistic, I think this sums up the entire album. All in all this record is a lovely 42 minutes and 30 seconds of a long hot sunday afternoon, what more could you ask for?

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