Written by Ben Meyercord.
Okay the let me get the two things that are always written about A Weather out of the way. Their record, Cove, was released by Conor Oberst’s (Bright Eyes) imprint of Saddle Creek Records, Team Love. They have hushed vocals. I am here to tell you there is more to this band.
Just like most of the stuff on Team Love, A Weather sound nothing like Bright Eyes. And just because lead singer and main songwriter, Aaron Gerber, never raises his voice above a whisper, it doesn’t mean that the band writes boring music. In fact, if you listen to the album all the way through, you will notice the subtle details and interlocking melodies of all of the instruments.
Aaron Gerber switches between an acoustic guitar and a Rhodes. There are two other guitarists, Aaron Krenkel and Zach Boyle, and a bassist, Louis Thomas. Drummer Sarah Winchester plays on a minimal kit consisting of a floor tom, a snare and a cymbal.
The songs often have several parts and change time signatures in a way that flows very naturally. Sarah adds many layers of her sometimes smokey and always lovely vocals that match perfectly with whispers of the Aaron’s vocals. The tunes often reside between the slow burner and pretty poppy territory. They also manage to be very catchy—I have been humming various tunes from this album ever since I first listened to it. And the actual sound of the album is superb thanks to uber-producer Adam Selzer (Norfolk & Western, Loch Lomond, Laura Gibson, etc…).
With all of this musicality happening, some bands tend to settle on terrible and or nonsensical lyrics. A Weather do not. They often lean towards the sadder parts of life, but more accurately they tend to emote a feeling of longing oft with a clever turn of phrase: I can’t believe you said, ‘I can’t love you anymore’. Did you mean to no greater extent, or is it over now for sure from “Small Potatoes” sticks out in my mind. It is well worth it to pull out the liner notes to read the words while listening.
Overall, Cove is a very impressive debut by a band that seems to have a promising career ahead of them.
This review was originally published April 29, 2008 on the old version of FensePost.
Team Love [CD, 2008]
1. Spiders, Snakes
2. Shirley Road Shirley
3. Screw Up Your Courage
4. Small Potatoes
5. Hanging Towers of Baltimore
6. Pilot’s Arrow
7. Oh My Stars
8. Pinky Toe
9. It’s Good To Know