Pinegrove’s Cardinal was just named one of our best albums of the year and while Evan Stephens Hall’s remarkable voice and sharp lyricism provide the anchor for that band, they’re buoyed by subtly complex instrumentation courtesy of the rest of its members. We’ve already seen some of that magic manifest itself outside of the group through Nandi Rose Plunkett’s work as Half Waif, and now Pinegrove guitarist Sam Skinner is gearing up to release his debut solo album, Danny Through Junior, early next year.
“Learn” is its lead single and opening track (it features drums and background vocals from Hall), and it carries itself with a warm, improvisational flow. Skinner employs short, stilted phrasing that plays in contrast to padded piano and smooth pitch-shifting that’s reminiscent of James Blake. “Two years gone by/ And nothing’s different,” he bemusedly sings. “On top of the tallest building/ I’m looking down/ That tells me something/ I’ll never learn.” It paints its development, or lack thereof, in swatches of blue and grey, a poignant and dejected introduction to a promising talent. Listen below.
07 “Letter 2″