Sunday, July 22, 2018

Humble Digs - labor of love "A Portrait Of Grace" trippy blended impressions in a 150 year old farmhouse

Humble Digs latest labor of love is called "A Portrait Of Grace" and as they note was recorded in Amherst, Mass "on Southeast Street in every one's bedrooms, the pantry, both hallways, the living room and the abandoned silo out back" and fully inhabiting a space (in this case a 150 year old farmhouse) makes sense because the collection of songs feel lived in, immersed in and are, in the end, immersive transformative pieces of sound that seep into you like slow motion raindrops. You will feel this kind of organic elegance on the album's set piece called Portrait. A really special artistically wrought piece of work with orchestrations of  emotional sound  that shape shift as the song moves along. It slowly washed over me in an awe inspiring way. 

Humble Digs blend alt folk, garden rock, dreamy psychedelic rock, pushed through blues and country filters with a patina of progressive rock and jazz tones layered on for good measure. On the track Shame you hear those garden / southern rock strains and to me the song feels like dancing hippies on a large Southern porch. The first track Bloodstream is a kind of free form light folk rock affair that almost flutters around your head. There is this very evocative piano break by special guest player Charles Vadala that  feels like wandering thoughts and then the song spins up and around once more. Uptown / Inbound feels jammy and wanderlusty with blues / Southern strains. The musical break brings in progressive lead runs. The song is a bit all over the place in the best possible way. The very last song has no name. It has a nice sway and has very cool detours feeling like a stream of consciousness piece of music with a sense of experimentation and improvisation. At least that is the sense I get. It covers a lot of territory and gets playfully psychedelic and rockish. The wide eyed run down the rabbit hole is fun and a great way to end. Dive into 9 track album. Please, I implore you. It is a trip worth taking (again and again).

Humble Digs (at their core) are Jake Slater (guitar, vox), George Condon (guitar), Henry Condon (drums), Riley Feeney (bass, vox) and Matt Twaddle (keys) but the band does note that "over the past year we have featured Mtali Banda, Leland Baker and Dave Murphy on saxes, Casey Opal and Luke Tobin on vocals, Ben Young and Lily Sexton on Strings and Ben Beal on keys. We are a BIG Family."
Robb Donker

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