Recommend if you like: Mac DeMarco, Alabama Shakes, Sea Change or Morning Phase by Beck

Expectation: Whitney is an indie-rock band from Chicago. Light Upon the Lake is their debut album.

TRACK-BY-TRACK

  • No Woman – A good opening track immediately grabs you and says “This is why you should listen to this album; this is what you’re going to hear”. This track does exactly that: from the gentle trumpet intro, to the guitar riff that sounds nostalgic the first time you hear it.
  • The Falls – The vocal production is a bit off-putting at first, but once you’re used to it this is just a really fun little song.
  • Golden Days – A very classic rock inspired track that is more Travelling Wilburys than  it is Journey, and it sounds great.
  • Dave’s Song – Another nice riff-based song, exploring a similar sound to Alabama Shakes’s first album.
  • Light Upon the Lake – While the compliments I pay to many of these songs are similar, the execution is often quite different. This track and its predecessor are a perfect example of this: even though both are guitar riff centric with very classic rock sounding choruses, the execution is drastically different.
  • No Matter Where We Go – A very Souhern rock track, but its not too bad.
  • Red Moon – A brief instrumental track that successfully provides a change of pace where none really felt necessary. Its not bad, but it doesn’t really go anywhere.
  • Polly & Follow – The final two tracks are more of the same, but in a good way. Just a few more minutes of optimistic, riff-driven rock music.

Overall: This is an album to show your dad, but I mean that in a good way. Whitney explores a very nostalgic approach to rock music, imbuing their songs with a subtle folksy flair that makes this album a great casual listen as well as an entertaining album to fully focus on. The music is simple, but the riffs are good, the melodies are nice, and the trumpet and string parts provide just enough sonic diversity at the right points to keep the album engaging throughout.

Score: 6.5/10

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