Fern Knight Seven Years of Severed Limbs

[Normal; 2003]

Rating: 2.5/5

Styles: folk-noir, folk pop
Others: Low, Red House Painters, Cat Power, Nick Drake

Far away from the hot spots that nurture acts like Lightning Bolt, Les Savy Fav, and Black Dice, a secluded sector of Rhode Island is reserved for quieter, less abrasive sounds. A part of town that ditches the masks and art theory textbooks for tan apparel and moccasins. This is where Fern Knight lives. With lush musical flourishes blanketing the acoustic guitars and crooning vocals, Margie Wienk and Michael Corcoran craft haunting, atmospheric pop songs. Listening to Seven Years of Severed Limbs (their debut release under the Fern Knight moniker) is like Low meeting Cat Power at a Red House Painters show, while show openers Barbara Manning and Julie Cruise cover a Nick Drake song. And surprisingly enough, it works. For one hour partitioned into eleven tracks, minor tones caress the introspective lyrics ever so slightly, as the album slowly drags itself toward the end-- softly, delicately, and passionately. Unfortunately, many tracks sound alike, and they don't particularly benefit from their unusually extended lengths. Moreover, a band like Fern Knight is a dime a dozen. Very little sets them apart from the rest of the like-minded bands in the bucket, which is already overflowing into the gutters of washed-up rock. There's no doubt that Fern Knight is good at what they do, but there's no particularly good reason why you should listen to them instead of all the other bands that sound just like them, if only because it's the latest in the genre.

1. She Who Was So Precious to You
2. If I Could Write a Book About You
3. Wolf I
4. Theme
5. Kingdom
6. Wolf II
7. Chelyabinsk
8. Boxing Day
9. Mover Ghost/Mark the Days Off Your Wall
10. Sunday Afternoons
11. Dog Named Summer

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