Great Lake Swimmers, “A Forest of Arms”

Great_Lake_Swimmers-2015-A_Forest_of_Arms_cover_artGreat Lake Swimmers
A Forest of Arms
NETTWERK
5/10 

After more than a decade of making music, Great Lake Swimmers have put out a consistent stream of pretty songs. They know that lush soundscapes and pleasant pastoral themes work for them, and they milk it on their latest (and somewhat predictable) LP. The clean production found on A Forest of Arms seamlessly creates sonic textures that inspire nature walks and drives across empty highways, but that’s nothing new for the Canadian band, and this lack of risk and experimentation ultimately hinders this effort. There’s the typical Great Lake Swimmers back-and-forth between jaunty folk numbers and wistful break-up songs within the album, but any musical innovation all lives on top of a repetitive pacing that borders on boring. There’s nothing particularly wrong with A Forest of Arms, but there is an inescapable taste of disappointment left in your mouth when there isn’t anything more to really sink your teeth into.

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