Patience. More than any of the descriptors saddled upon The Strumbellas, a Toronto based septet, patience will be the most overlooked. The band turned heads with an engaging video performance of “Underneath a Mountain” on Southern Souls and fine tuned their songs with several Cameron House residencies.
They could have easily rushed into a studio and hammered out a follow up to the well received EP and no one would have blinked an eye. Instead, The Strumbellas waited until the songs and the band were ready.
“The Sheriff”, showcases the flavor the band slow cooked. The Strumbellas play dark, gothic folk and given the sheer volume of the players involved, you’d expect the waters to get muddy. Instead, each element is presented clearly, and each idea developed fully. The Sheriff surges forward, benefiting from strings, piano, kick drum breakdowns, spot on harmonies and a well executed crescendo. The notes you hear and the energy the seven players exude isn’t an accident.
It’s hard to imagine a fan of The Avetts not settling into this song (or many of the other uptempo jaunts they offer up), but the debut LP - My Father And The Hunter - offers more sophisticated, tender moments that show the band’s ceiling could extend to great heights. The most immediate moments are those of pace and punch, but the most lasting are the ones the band delivers with a soft touch, including the spot on three play of “I Just Had a Baby”, “Left For Dead” and “Windsurfers” and the Paul Simon inspired penultimate track.
The Sheriff by thestrumbellas