Fire Note Says: Gregory Alan Isakov’s third full length may just be his best!
Album Review: Sometimes there is just nothing better than a softly played indie-folk record like The Weatherman, the third full-length album from Gregory Alan Isakov. The album is full of his confident smooth vocals that allow him to just sing. You see it all the time when production and instruments overpower a talented voice. Happily I can say that is not an issue here on The Weatherman.
From the opening track “Amsterdam” you realize that Isakov is going to take you on a rewarding ride that pleasantly drifts along as he starts the song off with a strolling acoustic strum until a piano comes and picks up the pace slightly as he sings “she’s easy on the eyes” until the big harmonized chorus kicks in on the last third and completely wins you over. It is the perfect lead track, which gives you a good picture of Isakov’s talents if The Weatherman is your first time listening. The next song, “Saint Valentine” has a bit more pep as Gregory questions what is going on as he sings “Ain’t that my own heart; Hanging out on the line?; Oh you’re all fucked up; Saint Valentine” which I must add is one of the most pleasant f-bombs you have ever heard! This strong songwriting continues throughout The Weatherman as memorable lines pop up like “She still has infinity in front of her” on “The Universe” or on “Suitcase Full Of Sparks” when he simply but yet desperately lets out “Yeah, I’m just trying to find my way to you.”
I will warn new fans to Isakov’s work that this is not a record to roll the windows down and drive fast but is the perfect album to lie in a hammock and sip on your favorite beverage. The Weatherman finds Gregory Alan Isakov becoming a stronger force on the neo-folk scene as its 41 minute running time seems just right. This is not an album that will sell you upon one listen so make sure to commit a bit more time to it because his sincerity is what seals the deal. As he takes you out on “All Shades Of Blue,” near the end of the record, Isakov has this quiet whistle that just highlights that this guy is all about the music. That is exactly the style I am always up for and Gregory Alan Isakov nails it on The Weatherman.
Key Tracks: “Saint Valentine”, “Time Will Tell”, “Suitcase Full Of Sparks”
Artists With Similar Fire: Harper Simon / Iron & Wine / The Avett Brothers
Gregory Alan Isakov Website
Gregory Alan Isakov Facebook
Suitcase Town Music
-Reviewed by Christopher Anthony