Striping music back to its very essence is something that sounds easy but is rarely done well. The Civil Wars did it, though they never sounded like they were having a lot of fun doing so, The Black Feathers and Flagship Romance excel at it and now I can add this Michigan duo to the list. The art isn’t just knowing what to strip out of a song, it is what you do with what is left, how to build structure and more importantly emotion with the hushed tones and gently chiming guitar lines that remain.
Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (incidentally one of my favourite films) seem to naturally understand that the power of the sculpture you build with these minimal materials is as much about the spaces as what surrounds them. It is about the anticipation between the lyrics, the atmospheres that hang between the notes, it is about using your music to draw the lines and let the imagination of the listener and the near silence of the universe colour between them. Sounds simple huh?