Best Albums of 2008: #12: Mount Eerie: Lost Wisdom

12. Mount Eerie: Lost Wisdom

On this album, Mount Eerie actually sounds a lot like one of my favorite bands from the Pacific northwest, the Finches. There is a forlorn female voice, the gentle strum of a guitar, and a generally morose quietude. Sometimes, it turns up one corner of its mouth in an ironic and sad smile, and other times it sits calmly in the dark.

Like a lot of albums featuring her as a guest, Julie Doiron totally makes Lost Wisdom what it is. It is casual and folksy, refusing to follow any rules or conventions at all but, instead, favoring a warbled stream-of-consciousness in every track. No one warbles meaninglessly like Julie Doiron does, and she really shines in pretty much every track. Phil Elvrum is great, as usual, though this album decidedly highlights his vocal abilities more than any of his other, more instrumental work.

Many of the songs on Lost Wisdom sound completely ad hoc. There is no discernable pattern to pick up on or anything really to sing along with. As a musical artifact, though, it is incredibly successful in evoking memory and affect. Unlike a lot of albums on this list, Lost Wisdom is not at all particular to this particular moment. It is sort of timeless and ever-present. It compensates for the avant-garde by refusing to maintain a safe distance. The album’s quiet folksiness are in your face and in your living room. You can hear every guitar strum and every breath. It is an intimate moment shared with a friend, in which neither person talks, but rather stares into the other’s eyes and suddenly understands. The internal stream of thought goes something like this:

what i find
will be found easily
and only when i'm not looking for it
without looking for the morning
in the sunset
and it's like this
and my will to live
hides implied
in my heart beating
without looking for fulfillment
but just accepting it

Related posts:
Best of 2008: #13: Cloud Cult: Feel Good Ghosts
Best of 2008: #14: Ratatat: LP3
Best of 2008: #15: The Submarines: Honeysuckle Weeks
Best of 2008: #16: Grand Archives: S/T
Best of 2008: #17: Yelle: Pop-up
Best of 2008: #18: Parenthetical Girls: Entanglements
Best of 2008: #19: The Gaslight Anthem- The '59 Sound
Best of 2008: #20: Billy Bragg- Mr. Love and Justice
Best of 2008: Intro


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