Review by Shannon Shumaker
Putting out a solid acoustic album is hard. It seems that as of lately, many bands have been releasing acoustic records - either rehashed versions of songs they’ve already released or new original material - and while some of these albums have been absolutely phenomenal in their attempt, others have fallen flat. After all, it’s hard to captivate an audience with just vocals and acoustics. That being said, however, Farewell, My Love’s newest effort, Wrapped Up In Pinstripes absolutely rises to the occasion.
This EP, while only five songs in length, manages to keep my attention with every passing track. Each song on Wrapped Up In Pinstripes hosts quite a bit of energy and movement, despite the fact that this is an acoustic EP. While “My Perfect Thing” didn’t quite sell me on my first listen of the album, (I felt that the vocalist didn’t really have much control over his voice in this track) upon my second listen, the track blew me away. The guitar work in this track is especially strong in “My Perfect Thing” and keeps the track upbeat and full of energy.
Following “My Perfect Thing” is “Skip The Memories” and this second track definitely makes up for all of the first song’s shortcomings by miles. The song starts strong with gorgeous vocals, and by the time the first catchy chorus comes in, I’m in love. Chad Kowal’s vocal range in this track is mind blowing, and is only showcased more in the following three tracks. The classic, almost flamenco inspired guitar solo in “Skip The Memories” is also incredible - it adds a really unique, unexpected touch to the track and just further proves that this band knows exactly what they’re doing acoustically. The same style of guitar work can also be found in the following track, “Portraits.”
“Paper Forts” is a gorgeous ballad that closes out Wrapped Up In Pinstripes perfectly. The piano part in this track is beautiful and the vocals are full of heart and soul. “Paper Forts” is easily the most emotional track on the EP, which makes it one of the strongest songs as well. The way that the song builds and builds until the end makes for the perfect finale, as well, leaving me wanting more and ready to hit repeat the second that the EP ends.
Wrapped Up In Pinstripes is definitely not boring by any means. While there isn’t a ton of versatility to the EP - every song has the same distinctly theatrical sound - all five tracks are incredibly strong. A lot of the time, acoustic songs tend to fall flat and sound boring and too stripped down, but Farewell, My Love has managed to keep my attention with Wrapped Up In Pinstripes. The guitar work on this EP is absolutely phenomenal and is just as important as the versatile vocals, and if this amazing effort is what Farewell, My Love can do acoustically, I’m definitely excited to see what they do next, as it promises to be incredible.
Listen to "Skip The Memories"