One of my favorite releases in recent memory is most definitely the latest album to be released by Blind Pilot. You’ve probably noticed me referencing them a lot, as they make my top five most weeks. They’re an indie-folk band based out of Portland. Originally, there were only two members, Israel Nebeker and Ryan Dobrowski. They went on a bike tour in 2008 carrying their instruments down the west coast on custom-made bike trailers and made around a dozen stops. A year later, they released their first album, 3 Rounds and a Sound and then added four members to fill out their sound.
Their music is filled with a wide array of instruments, such as acoustic guitar piano, organ, horns, dulcimer vibraphone, and various others. I got their first album back in summer of 2009 and I loved it. That following Fall during my first year at UVa, I went to see them when they came through Charlottesville at The Southern downtown. It was an awesome concert and I remember particularly enjoying a song that they played after telling us that it was a new one and wasn’t on their album. I had not heard it before and I loved it, especially when Israel (the lead singer) turned around and began playing percussion along with the drummer. Afterward, they said that the name of the song was “We Are the Tide.” This past September 13th, almost two years after that concert, they released their second studio album named after that song.
Now eight member strong, Blind Pilot’s sound is much more full. Sure, some of that can be attributed to the heightened production value of We Are the Tide with comparison to 3 Rounds and a Sound, but the quality of the writing as well as the quality of the lead singer’s voice has vastly improved and come to allow a fantastic album. It immediately jumped up to the top of my list, which is amazing because I hardly ever enjoy something on the first listen like that. Every song is great.
We Are the Tide
1. Half Moon
3. Keep You Right
4. We Are the Tide
5. The Colored Night
6. I Know
7. White Apple
8. Just One
9. Get it Out
10. New York
I can’t even really pick out one or two as my favorites. I would say, however, that they started off the album perfectly by putting Half Moon first. It’s a perfect first song.
The studio recording of the song that I so much enjoyed at the concert two years ago also did not fail to impress. It’s really cool imagining the performance as I listen to it. I love the way that the percussion drive this one.
The Colored Night might be the biggest accomplishment of the album for Blind Pilot. It is a perfect blend of so many styles and instruments and is all executed to perfection. The harmonies are beautiful, and the way that they are interwoven into the remainder of the song is fantastic. Also, the overall build of White Apple is really well orchestrated.
Alright so I could literally sit here and type praise word after praise word about everything having to do with this album and could post each song and tell you why I love it, but I think I’ll spare you. My life advice: get this album! No matter what music I listen to throughout a day, I always comes back to We Are the Tide. It’s just so good and easy to listen to at literally any point of the day and in any situation. They are easily my favorite current artist, and this is easily my favorite album. Here is a gem from their first album.
GO BUY THEM BOTH RIGHT NOW