By Neil Manning
Artist: Langhorne Slim
Album: Lost At Last Vol. 1
Release Date: November 10, 2017
Lost At Last Vol. 1 was an album I was anticipating after seeing Langhorne Slim open up for The Avett Brothers. He put on a little set that consisted of just his voice and guitar. He did quite a bit of songs off this album, so I had been waiting to be able to hear the studio versions. In the meantime, I listened to his previous albums and was satisfied. His music is very folky and captures that personal feel you typically get with folk music. His latest release doesn’t stray too far away from that concept.
The album opens up with one of the more powerful songs on the album. “Life Is Confusing” has a very simple instrumentation behind it, but the words are something most of us can relate too. Mix-ups and about how most things in life are fickle. “Life is confusing, and people are insane” is the chorus that is simple, yet a very relatable thought. The next song that captures my attention is “House Of My Soul (You Light The Room).” It immediately opens up with an optimistic G chord. After the intro, the lyrics begin and it’s a love song. It’s one of those songs you can’t help but sway too. It’s all around a well done song as the music keep you engaged and the words almost make you swoon. The song that comes on right after is “Ocean City (For May, Jack & Brother Jon).” This song gave me a Bob Dylan vibe from it, the way the song flows and tells a personal story that is carried by an easygoing melody. The lyrics are very reminiscent of a simpler time that you help feel through the music. The accordion in this song is the key part of the instrumentation. Its phrases in between verses stand out the most, and adds to the nostalgic mood that is set up by the lyrics.
The next song, and my personal favorite, is “Funny Feelin’ (For Junior Kimbrough and Ted Hawkins).” It starts off with just a guitar until the first verse. It’s a love song about chasing after the girl. The hook, “If I had someone to love me, then I’d have somebody to love” is a very obvious lyric but seems to work in this song. The lyrics have a very nice upbeat feel and the music behind it, which slowly adds instruments as the song goes, really help capture that emotion. It’s a nice little song that perfectly fits the way this album has been going. Going on and getting to the last noteworthy song, which happens to be the final song, you experience something slightly different than what has come before. “Better Man” starts off with an electric piano and the production sounds different than the previous songs. It has a much more somber feel and the lyrics feel more self discovering. The echo on his voice really adds to that feel and will make you contemplate a bit. It’s a grand song, and I feel it is a perfect way to end an album that explored different corners of life.
Lost At Last Vol. 1 is a great folk album that feels very personal to the songwriter, but relatable for the listeners. It explores different parts of a typical life that will cause you to rewind every now and then just to listen to a lyric again. While the music isn’t anything elaborate, it fits the written word perfectly and enhances the listening experience.