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Monday, March 7, 2016

Swell Album: Mothers - When You Walk a Long Distance You Are Tired [indie rock / folk / experimental]

Mothers is an indie band from Athens, Georgia with one hell of a debut album and an unforgettable live performance to back it up. When You Walk a Long Distance You Are Tired came out a couple weeks ago and is currently my favorite release of 2016. Singer/guitarist Kristine Leschper's gorgeously fragile voice bears a striking resemblance to that of fellow indie folkstress Angel Olsen (whose last album wound up at #2 of our best of 2014 list), but Mothers makes a name for themselves by experimenting with richer instrumentation and more complex compositions.

What begins as a simple folk song with acoustic guitar and piano, the beautiful album opener "Too Small for Eyes" really takes off when it welcomes a sweeping string orchestra into the mix about halfway through. Mothers flips the script on the next couple of songs, "It Hurts Until It Doesn't" and "Copper Mines", introducing the listener to the more rock-driven sound that they do so well, with busy intertwining guitars and powerful percussion. Not unlike other bands drawing from multiple genres, on the rest of When You Walk a Long Distance You Are Tired Mothers balances these two different styles song to song before leading us to the epic 7-minute rollercoaster of a closer, "Hold Your Own Hand", which alternates between uptempo with downtempo, catapulting you into space one moment while channeling veteran post-rockers Explosions in the Sky, then abruptly cutting the power to let you slowly drift away with Leschper's voice as your only beacon. Instead of letting you coast to a smooth stop, Mothers caps their debut with a bang to remember, one final shot for the stars.

Stream When You Walk a Long Distance You Are Tired below and get your hands on a copy of the album here.

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