There is something so spectacular about instrumental simplicity. The way the New Jersey-based band, Pinegrove, is able to effectively convey such an emphatic experience is magical. Since I was introduced to Pinegrove and then was able to see the band live, I’ve become a huge fan of their ability to perform and create music that speaks to the heart.
The opening track, “Dotted Line,” is classic Pinegrove. It opens with a catchy guitar-based melody while the vocals of Evan Stephens Hall bring in licks of indie-folk and indie rock as he sings “I don’t know how/but I’m thinking it’ll all work out”. “Dotted Line” has the elements of bands like American Football and similar indie rock bands. It definitely has the elements to be a successful single.
“Spiral” is a short, but simple track (running time at 0:56 seconds) performed on the acoustic guitar. It brings together the simplicity of an acoustic guitar and Hall’s gentle vocals.
On the first single, “The Alarmist,” the band creates an incredible track from its lyricism to its music. It begins gentle acoustic guitar strumming and then breaks into Hall’s warm vocals as he sings gently about a relationship that’s making him spin out of control.
Pinegrove addresses drug and alcohol use in the music industry on the track “No Drugs” as Hall sings “no drugs and alcohol today/I wanna remember/everything we talk about”. The track is an alt-country-tinged indie rock song that touches upon the serious topic of addiction as he continues to sing “I am the same as I ever was/I think the difference this time/is that I can just walk away.”
I think one of the strongest tracks on Marigold is “Moment.” The track is upbeat with strong guitar-led instrumentation, excellent vocals from Hall as he sings about being in the moment. The song starts as an upbeat track with an elegant guitar melody paired with Hall’s emotional lyrics.
The track “Endless” is also one of the strongest on the record. It starts with the classic Pinegrove melody, just a guitar paired with Hall’s emotional vocals, but then ramps into a more upbeat chorus with alt-country influences. “Endless” has the potential to become one of the singles from the record.
Overall, Pinegrove produced an incredible record that exemplifies what they stand for, the kind of music that is true to their purpose, while also becoming better at what they do. They can only go up from here.