Tuesday, December 15, 2009

#4 Album of 2009: Spirit Guides - Evening Hymns

Spirit Guides

Evening Hymns
Out of This Spark.

SCQ Album Review

It’s no surprise to me that my favourite album out of Toronto this year is the one that sounds farthest removed from any concrete jungle. A breath of fresh air, Spirit Guides is a full-blooded, handsomely orchestrated folk record that instates Evening Hymns (aka Jonas Bonnetta) as a folk troubadour able to see more in the forest than just its trees. Merging the natural with the spiritual, Bonnetta’s songwriting seeks a higher order where the past is soaked in rainy field recordings (‘Cedars’, ‘History Books’) and every step forward unearths a mountainous chorus (thanks to contributions from Ohbijou, Forest City Lovers, and The Wooden Sky). Fittingly, no other record this year sounds quite as expansive and dew-drenched as the cover of Spirit Guides.

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