Peter Wolf Crier – Garden of Arms [Album Review]

by Woody on October 6, 2011


The duo of Peter Pisano and Brian Moen are back for their sophomore effort with Garden of Arms. Inter-Be was a great debut – full of great songwriting and excellent musicianship. In describing them to friends, I’ve labeled them the folk Black Keys.

Garden of Arms takes everything from Inter-Be, adds more layers, more loops and more goodness. At the core, remains Moen’s inch-perfect drumming and Pisano’s earnest voice are awash in loops, layers and distorted guitars. And while I would normally worry when a quality band introduces so many new elements to the mix, Pisano and Moen had the talent to spare. At points, the new elements are overwhelming, but there are moments of brilliance that a) make this album worthy of your collection and b) points to a very bright future for this dynamic duo.

The opening chords of Beach sound like Radiohead, which I never would have imagined in a million of years on a Peter Wolf Crier album. Haunt You works around an ominous organ chords. This song has Pisano harmonizing with himself as Moen provides the percussion backbone. Hard Heart is a song where drums are at the forefront of the mix as Pisano drifts front to back throughout the song.

I imagine this album is going to be polarizing for fans of Peter Wolf Crier and quite possibly that whole Eau Claire music scene. They took a very nice formula and entered a lot of experimentation and production to the mix. Some are going to welcome it and some are going to see it as over the top. I guess, I am somewhere in the middle, leaning more to the welcoming side.

I’ve seen these guys a couple of times live and their talent is undeniable. At their core, remain very talented songwriters and I love the ambition to break-free and try some new stuff on here.

Peter Wolf Crier – Settling It Off

Peter Wolf Crier – Right Away

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Jysi H October 6, 2011 at 8:00 pm

Great stuff!

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