Monday, July 9, 2012

Freedom Season's "Along the Way" - the best Jewish folk rock album of the year.

For the last couple of days I've had Freedom Season on heavy heavy rotation. I'm on another work trip and this is exactly the kind of soul music to get me through. Listening to the YouTube video below, you'll definitely get a strong Shlomo Carlebach vibe. Well done, but pretty much everyone with tzizit and a guitar wants to be Carlebach, right?

Ok. Now listen to the tracks from their studio album, Along the Way. Check out Taste of Heaven, Havdalah, or Old Friend. Fantastic harmonies and melodies and bluesy acoustic riffs that echo 1960's and early 1970's Americana folk pop bands like the Byrds. And strong strong well crafted lyrics that pick up some deep ideas without taking easy 'let's do another arrangement of one of the psalms/zimrot/Carlebach/classic niggun' shortcuts*. Their song Havadallah is going to become a camp standard. You wait and see.
Wow. Where did these guys come from? Where have they been all my life? The Cool Jew blog recently compared Freedom Season to 8th Day. I can see the comparison, but I'm not buying it. 8th Day's got a much more straight up modern rock sound. Freedom Season's way more the softer side of folk rock. I will say that if they can get their stage show up to the level of the album, they'll be selling out halls the way that 8th Day does and Blue Fringe did.

In addition to scoring "Along the Way" through Bandcamp, you can grab it from iTunes and Amazon MP3. You can also follow their adventures on Facebook. And you really should.

* Just to be clear here, I love "psalms/zimrot/Carlebach/classic nigguns" as much as the next Jewish music obsessed guy. I'm just excited to see a couple of songwriters who can really write lyrics and aren't afraid to divert from the traditional Jewish community's standard music formula's.

1 comment:

bikelovejones said...

Great music! Thanks for turning me onto this group. Just bought the CD and I agree with you that Havdalah is going to become THE hot camp tune.