Review: Little Wings

Little Wings
“Light Green Leaves”
(K Records/ Secretly Canadian)

If I was from Canada I’d keep it a secret, too.  I should also keep it a secret that I really like Little Wings because my hardcore friends would probably beat the living hell out of me.  Little Wings make some of the softest folk rock of all time.  Softies but goodies.  Many of the stripped down tracks are nothing more than gentle guitars and casual melodies with the odd drum and or keyboard thrown in for good measure.  If there’s a missing link between Simon and Garfunkle, The Breeders, and Built to Spill, then this is surely it.  The lyrics are esoteric and obtuse, the melodies are haunting and beautiful, incorporating elements of jazz, barbershop quartets, and folk music into something that should definitely be in your CD collection.

While the musicianship is undoubtedly unique and  worthy of note, it is the subtle poetry of the lyrics that keeps “Light Green Leaves” spinning in my player.  “What Wonder” contains the pointed, “Don’t fight the day / Don’t blame the way / Don’t kill your laughing” as well as the murky, “Another branch to break / Another crooked limb to climb”.  A lot of people are sure to dismiss this as a bunch of hippies mumbling their way though a dozen tracks, but they’re missing out.  And so are you.