There's an earthy yet mystical quality this band possesses that's hard to define. It's like understanding the scientific explanation of a flower, but still finding its unusual beauty elusive. The pastoral vocal melodies and lilting compositions on the Nederland, Colo.-based group's latest release are no exception, somehow conveying all the glow and charm of a summer evening in under an hour.
Even after repeated listens, Bonnie Paine's riveting, graceful voice on "Drop" still sends chills down the spine. It's a feeling that sticks with the listener throughout the album, as if the transcendental folk quintet is casting spells instead of writing songs. Sage Cook's humble rasp on "Cosmic Pulse" conveys a somber wistfulness to the beat of a djembe, and Bridget Law's old-timey fiddle mastery teases dancers to find a partner on "Lexington."
While it's hard to pick favorites out of this tasteful medley of folk instruments and imaginative lyrics, Paine's contributions are consistently captivating. From her tasteful, fleet-fingered washboard playing to her shy-but-persuasive vocal harmonies, the siren's allure stitches the rest of the band's elements together. The result is an eloquent album equally profound and seductive.
Elephant Revival plays the Top Hat Wednesday, March 30, at 10 PM. $10/$8 in advance at Ear Candy Music.