The recent explosion of folksy music onto the indie scene has been paired with some interesting exploration of vocal harmonies, and The Daredevil Christopher Wright has been in step with this trend. That being said, with their latest album, The Nature of Things, released on File Under: Music, The Daredevil Christopher Wright reveal themselves not only as masters of their voices, but also as comfortable performers with their respective instruments. The Nature of Things is a well-structured album, piecing together stunning vocal harmonies with equally impressive guitar harmonies and intricate licks from other diverse instruments. Together, these elements add up to a must-listen album.
The Nature of Things plays well from start to finish and stands powerfully as a cohesive piece of music. The first line of the album (“Woke up this morning, I thought I’d been transformed…”) is mysterious enough to perk up an ear and demand some focus. In fact, the entire opener, “I & Thou,” serves as an effective hook, drawing listeners in with a taste of the vocal harmonies to come. The album goes on to usher the listener along through the various tracks. The relative placement of experimental songs and more accessible songs breaks the album up into bite-sized chunks, making it easier to digest the more abstract songs. The result is an album that is easily listenable all the way through: no need to skip a track.
The centerpiece of this well-balanced record is the three-part vocal harmonies. The voices of the band fit together so well that I sometimes had a hard time noticing when I was listening to the sound of one voice and when I was listening to three. When all three voices join together and sing in concert, the vocals are perfectly full and warm. With their latest effort, The Daredevil Christopher Wright has solidified their position as masters of vocal harmony.
With such amazing vocal harmony, I hope the brave approach to instrumentation taken by The Daredevil Christopher Wright does not go unnoticed. Rather than showcasing their amazing vocals exclusively by placing them over simplistic instrumental tracks, the band gives us some substantial licks and riffs. “Blood Brother” stands out as a track with multiple focal points. I listened to it at first for the vocals and returned to it to zero in on the accompanying music. These kinds of instrumental lines make the album intriguing on an additional level.
The Nature of Things has it all. There’s no doubt that boys of The Daredevil Christopher Wright put tremendous energy into this album. Every element of the album seems very polished and intentional, from the vocals to the instrumentation to the record layout. It’s incredibly exciting to see this kind of music coming out of Wisconsin.