By Jolie Klefeker
It's been nice to feel a little bit of cool weather creep in. Any back-to-school gloominess I may have been experiencing has been completely washed away by my excitement for autumn. While temperatures may drop, fall is such a cozy time. There's something so wholesome and satisfying about turning on your heat as blustery winds begin to stir outside. But of course, what really gets me going about fall is the music. The comfy familiarity of a cool day opens the door for the sweet, autumnally appropriate notes of the acoustic guitar to warm you up and soothe your soul. Something about the wistful and nostalgic tones of acoustic and folk music seems to parallel the season's mood and make the journey into winter all the more welcoming.
First up on the indie/acoustic ballot is Florist. The gentle, synth-laden folk sounds created by the Brooklyn quartet are the product of the friendship between Emily Sprague, Rick Spataro and Jonnie Baker, who met in upstate New York. After moving to New York City, they added a fourth member, Felix Walworth of Told Slant. Their latest record, "If Blue Could Be Happiness," carries an intimate, heavy-hearted yet simple tone. Thematically, the songs span a vast and human range of emotions, from confronting the sudden death of lead singer Emily Sprague's mother to hopeful testaments to being alive.
The track "Glowing Brightly" is thick with loss and sorrow, but hidden within is a wise and bittersweet sense of optimism, a subtle celebration of the beauty in the mundanity of the everyday. Sprague sings: "Catskill Mountains, I will always come back to you/ Mom, I love you, I still hear your voice inside my sleep/ Next time you see me, I'll be glowing brightly/ Outside with the birds in the middle of the yard." Florist is sage, poetic and unassuming. The softness of their delicate melodies is welcoming and understanding. "If Blue Could Be Happiness" is out on Sept. 29 on Double Double Whammy records. Keep your ears open for this one — you'll definitely hear it spinning hot on 1190.
Double Double Whammy label-mate Hannah Read, aka Lomelda, just released her second official album, "Thx." Instrumentally, Lomelda is minimal. Mild rhythms and airy acoustic guitars convey a general unimposing mood to supplement the vocals. Read finds beauty in the plain. Her lyrics are the conduit through which her arresting-yet-modest vocals can travel. She sings with a captivating fragility that sounds neither forced nor expected. "Thx" has an erudite mastery of simplicity, a dynamic awareness. It seems to know exactly when to ebb and flow, maintaining a delicate balance. For fans of Adult Mom or Free Cake For Every Creature, Lomelda takes a more laid-back approach to all your favorite indie pop.
Lomelda and Florist are coming to Denver — together! Both will be opening for Pinegrove on Oct. 14 at the Gothic Theatre. If you're also itching for something to satisfy your cozy, fall desires, I would definitely check out this show.
As always, tune into Radio 1190 for the most exciting independent music in town, new or old: 1190 AM, 98.9 FM in Boulder, and all around the world at radio1190.org.