The name Grant Olsen may not ring a bell, but mention Arthur of Arthur & Yu, and that may turn on a light or two. If you’re like me, you’ve been wondering where that band went – after all, they were the honored first release from Hardly Art. The answer is I don’t know. But the good news is that we now have Gold Leaves, which is Olsen’s (aka Arthur’s) new project.
Gold Leaves has signed to Hardly Art, and the band’s debut LP The Ornament hits stores mid August. They’ve given us the title track to enjoy in the meantime.
So how does “The Ornament” stack up to the greats off Arthur & Yu’s In Camera? I say quite nicely. Sure, Olsen doesn’t have Sonya Westcott (aka Yu) at his side, but he still produces a solid psychedelic folk, majestic in its mere presence.
“The Ornament” does stand out. Olsen has matured significantly in the past four years; he’s experienced the good and the bad, and has taken certain natural steps the majority of us will eventually make. He pumps these into his music in a way perfect for the folk heritage within. The psychedelic traits pull from his prior project as well as the inclusion of producer Jason Quever (Papercuts).
I quite like “The Ornament”, and while those harmony male/female vocals may not exist here I don’t miss them. Olsen easily stands on his own, and he does it with accompaniment from good friends and great musicians.
Download: “The Ornament” by Gold Leaves