Midlake The Courage Of Others

Midlake The Courage Of Others
With '06s The Trials Of Van Occupanther, this Texas quintet streamlined their psychedelic folk explorations into a compelling sound that echoed the warmth and mystery of '70s classics like CSNY's Déjà Vu. In their wake came Fleet Foxes and a host of other similarly styled retro folk rockers. The Courage Of Others shows that nothing much has changed in the Midlake camp, and that's an entirely good thing. The haunting harmonies are still intact, as are the sparkling, classically infused arrangements and woody rhythms. If anything, the group have gone in an even more '70s Brit-folk direction, with much of the new album reflecting vintage Fairport Convention. Tracks like "Rulers, Ruling All Things" and "Core Of Nature" are the best examples of Midlake's skill at slow-burning meditations, with lead vocalist Tim Smith's ethereal voice providing much of the mystery. The Courage Of Others is a rare release that captivates upon first listen, and continues to reveal new facets with each subsequent spin. (Bella Union)