VILLAGERS – {Awayland}

Album: {Awayland}

Artist: Villagers

Label: Domino

Release Date: April 09, 2013



 Operating under the moniker of the Villagers as essentially a one man band, Conor J. O’Brien comes across like a toss-back to that fabled era in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, when every album was destined to be an epoch and more than a mere collection of songs. On this, his sophomore set, he follows up his internationally acclaimed debut, Becoming a Jackal, by demonstrating why he could be in contention for the title of Rock’s next wunderkind. A musician capable of creating lush if sometimes unlikely arrangements, he uses his particular prowess as a means of fashioning spectacular soundscapes.

 Songs like “Judgement Call” bring to mind the radio-ready designs of Tears for Fears, but it’s tracks like the insistent “Nothing Arrived” and the hushed, introspective “My Lighthouse” that affirm he’s clearly worthy of his recognition. Accessible yet intelligent, prog without pretension, O’Brien’s work is bound to be talked about, not only as a milestone in his forward trajectory, but also as one of the year’s major success stories as well. Few writers could pen a line as pointed as “Naked on the toilet/With a toothbrush in his hand/He suddenly acquired an overwhelming sense of doubt” (from the song “Earthly Pleasure”) and make it seem so intriguing. That’s but one reason why {Awayland} offers such a fascinating escape.

 DOWNLOAD: “Judgement Call,” “My Lighthouse,” “Nothing Arrived”

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