Release DetailsLABEL The End
RELEASED ON 1/24/2006
The Acoustic Verses
posted on 1/2006 By:
As you can read on the Green Carnation interview posted here, Tchort and Co. decided to write and release an all-acoustic album in commemoration of 15 years in business. In that 15 year span, the band has grown and diversified, not only in sound but in lineup. That age is a bit deceptive though, as the first full album was put out in 2000, so don’t stumble upon this album and expect to find ten more preceding it.
While some may immediately compare this album to another acoustic album from a certain band that begins with an “O”, the reality is that Green Carnation’s sound more easily transitions into a fully acoustic album. They’ve hinted at this turn on older songs like “Lullaby in Winter” (from A Blessing in Disguise), but had never previously explored the acoustic sound to this depth. As is usually the case, talented songwriters can write enjoyable music even if it’s outside of their usual realm.
The backbone of the album is the nimble fingerwork of Tchort. While the entire band contributed to the songwriting, the two that he penned (“Sweet Leaf”, “Alone”) are the most recognizable GC songs. “Sweet Leaf” begins the album serenely, and the first half-minute could easily find their way onto an adult contemporary station. But the verses are backed up by haunting, dark chords. “The Burden is Mine…Alone” follows, and basically rides two guitar lines the whole song. Fortunately, Kjetil’s dour voice perfectly suits a dark acoustic album, and really rounds out an album, that by design, can be a little sparse.
Folkish violins allow “Alone” to really stand out from the rest of the album. The guitarwork is faster and more chord-based than note progressions, and the general atmosphere is more energetic than the preceding songs. This leads into the centerpiece of the album, a three-part, 15-minute track entitled “9-29-045”. The first piece, I’ll admit, is a little dry but the latter two chapters come alive. And by “alive”, I mean envelopingly bleak and dismal.
Green Carnation is one of those bands that never gets complacent and avoids falling into ruts by constantly evolving their sound. This album continues that trend, managing to be catchy and memorable, yet solemn. The dark acoustic album is not an easy concept to pull off, but The Acoustic Verses succeeds in doing just that.
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