Friday, Jun 12, 2020 7:00p -
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On The Lumineers’ audacious new album, III (Dualtone, September 13), every note, every syllable, and every moment of silence in between is emotionally charged. Through its course, songwriters Wesley Schultz and Jeremiah Fraites make it emphatically clear that the arrangements don’t have to be dense for the songs to be intense.
For this pivotal project, Schultz and Fraites brought Simone Felice back into the fold and added violinist Lauren Jacobson. Felice helmed the group’s chart-topping, certified platinum second album, Cleopatra (2016), and Jacobson has now appeared on all three Lumineers’ albums and has played with them since 2011. She has also joined the band as a touring member, joining pianist Stelth Ulvang, bassist/backing vocalist Byron Isaacs and multi-instrumentalist Brandon Miller. (After eight years, cellist/vocalist Neyla Pekarek left the group in 2018 to embark on a solo career.)
The work is titled III not just because it’s The Lumineers’ third full-length album, but more significantly because nine songs are presented in three chapters, each focusing on one of three main characters (in addition to the nine songs the album contains an instrumental plus three more bonus songs that don’t fit in the narrative). The chapters also serve as the visual bookend for a sequential video series comprising the nine tracks, each directed by Kevin Phillips (whose 2017 film Super Dark Times is streaming on Netflix).
III is so taut in its narrative progression that one might assume it was created with premeditation, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. On the contrary, the work willed itself into existence out of a series of seemingly unconnected elements that magically locked together into a coherent whole.
More info: https://thelumineers.com/