Iron and Wine Sparks a Revolution
  • FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 01, 2013

  • Posted by: Madison Murphy

Ever since Iron & Wine, aka Sam Beam, erupted onto the indie scene, his transformation has been noteworthy and inspiring, to say the least. After mastering the acoustic, folk sounds explored on albums like The Creek Drank the Cradle and Our Endless Numbered Days, Sam Beam decided to rev up his engine with 2007's The Shepherd's Dog. With that, he reeled in a wider spectrum of fans who felt electrified by his remarkable character.

They wanted to dig deeper, and Beam responded with 2011's Kiss Each Other Clean. Although it might not have filled all the voids his fans had hoped for, it was a definite step up from his last album. That's the true beauty about Beam - you cannot label him, he knows no boundaries and refuses to fizzle out into a given category. His technique in constantly incorporating new instruments on each track, whether its a piano, xylophone, or an entire horn section, all bring life to his haunting lyrics.

By adding a little more umph to his last album, his direction for this upcoming album, Ghost on Ghost (which is due to come out in April) seems a bit hazy, but nonetheless exciting. It would be ludicrous to think he'd settle for another super indie, folk-stemmed album.

Recently, Beam released a single, "Lovers' Revolution," which will continue to keep the perplexing veil that surrounds Iron & Wine fixated. This track, which sounds similar to Kiss Each other Clean's "Big Burned Hand" and "Your Fake Name Is Good Enough" comes to life with an explosive horn section. Although completely random and sporadic, the beauty lies in its calamity. The piano sounds bluesy, the horns are jazzy, the echoes drowning, and the smoky snares lay in between: effortlessly titter-tattering along the cusp of being hidden between the measures. It's absolutely terrific. And terrifying.

Not only is the music abstract, but Beam's lyrics give the word abstraction a whole new meaning. Laughing gas, crying, the government, flags, shadows, and compromise. And somehow, through all of this, the sound is not only enticing but oddly inviting. The stakes, although they may not be in plain view, are definitely ascending for this next album after the weirdness in "Lovers' Revolution."

Listen to the new track, below.

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