Great Northern – Remind Me Where The Light Is reviewed by Robert Ham
The second album by the L.A. duo Great Northern has the feeling of an action painting. Principal members Rachel Stolte and Solon Bixler splash bold colors about, dominating the canvas with brash instrumentation and shimmering production values. It is a sound similar to a post-shoegazer Britpop scene, when groups like Catherine Wheel tried to insert the sonic experimentation of Kevin Shields and Robin Guthrie into their brash rock theatrics. Sometimes it produced brilliant pop singles, but more often it ended up a leaden mess.
Having history on their side, Great Northern manage to avoid those pitfalls on this new album. They have created a richly textured album, combining buzzing guitars, tremulous keyboards and stirring, breathy vocals from both Bixler and Stolte.
What elevates this album further is the obvious emotion these two instill their songs with. They may wrap their lyrics up tightly in metaphor, but it is quite easy to glean the expressions of doubt, heartbreak and occasional despair within. It isn’t a gloomy record, as these lyrics are often matched up with spacious, driving pop music.
In spite of the sometimes dour tone of the lyrics, the album does end on a nice note of hope, in the guise of the rousing anthem “33″. The lovely, acoustic guitar-driven track that sounds almost Christian in its expressions of faith (“Now that we’ve found our place here today/I will follow you anywhere”) and restfulness.
Great Northern – Remind Me Where The Light Is is released today, April 28th. Buy It From The Amazon MP3 Store Here