FIELD REPORT - MARIGOLDEN

 

Marigolden chronicles Chris Porterfield's  struggle with sobriety through his evocative symbolism and storytelling. The record is strewn with references to the inevitable tolls taken by the passage of time, and prolonged distance from home and loved ones. I go back to his songs frequently and keep finding new and fascinating layers in his lyricism.

 

The album runs the musical gamut, from the Traveling Wilburys-esque pop of “Home,” to the Neil Young-inspired piano ballad “Ambrosia,” to the electronic sonic landscape of “Wings.” The inspiration for the original construction of songs came from the idea of having a folk core that would combine Chris's storytelling with Ben's ethereal pedal steel and electronics and Shane's complex rhythms. This came together almost instantly on "Decision Day" and "Enchantment", which became the bookends and roadmap for the album; but conversely caused  "Cups and Cups" and "Wings" to struggle with their respective identities.

 

In both cases of "Cups" and "Wings", we recorded 4 or 5 completely different versions of the songs at the same tempo, and the final versions of the songs became piecing moments from each of the takes into their own beautiful Frankenstein's Monsters. I love the counterbalance of these songs to "Marigolden" and "Home".

 

 

"Rooted in acoustic guitar strums, sustained piano chords, and post-Emma soundscapes, these arrangements are spare and gentle  as they tenderly cradle the painstakingly wrought lyrics." - Pitchfork

 

"An impeccably sequenced album with drum machine and synth-heavy slow-burners (“Wings”), rhythmic and hushed folk (“Cups and Cups”), and wandering folk pop (“Home (Leave the Lights On)”). Throughout, Porterfield manages to keep his voice rough, with a subtle twang and earthy warmth." - Consequence of Sound

 

"Marigolden is a quiet exclamatory statement hearkening toward what’s gone missing from America’s roots." - Line of Best Fit