Review: Willow Steps – A Truth Too Big to See

Willow Steps - A Truth Too Big to See - coverAmid the chaos and turmoil of everyday life it becomes necessary to seek out any semblance of sanity one can achieve. An escape. An oasis from the painfully unchecked comments and derogatory stances spewed across the landscape of modern society.

While it may seem the obvious choice, music can do just that. Better yet, specifically Willow Steps can soothe the wounds of pioneering everyday life.

From the minds that brought us Dear Indugu comes the five song A Truth Too Big to See. Jesse Strickman (acoustic guitar, lead vocals) and Leiya Mahoney (vocal harmony) pair in an airy, reflective, post-punk folk styling with contributions from Van Jackson-Weaver (Bass) and Graham Patzner (Violin).

Collectively Willow Steps picks, slaps, and strums their way through heart-on-their-sleeve pains of love’s complications, intimate confessions, and realizations. On an level hardly matched in most music these days, Strickman et al play out a fine balance in “Kicking Soot,” “If Love is a fire,/Then we lift a foot, kick the soot/Watch us as we stomp it out.” The painfully real track beautifully divides itself between captivating harmonies and punctuating lyric. The testament to the other songs, the EP goes on to draw you in with themes of existentialism, infidelity, and promise all with enough grace to fill you up while making you think.

As bands evolve often they become consumed by the conflagration of musical trends. To oppose these temptations requires a great amount of vision and strength. And I’m not talking someone who just gets weird for weird sake, but rather, someone who boldly compiles a sound that is precisely where they want to be without being drawn into the easy route. And that is exactly what plays out on Willow Steps’ A Truth Too Big to See. Unapologetically, the EP is the antithesis of today’s chaotic ramblings and thoughtless bantering. It is precise. It is rich. It is beautiful. Most importantly, it is a refreshing escape, without being condescending, from the ugly.

GregGreg is a co-founder and regular contributor to Nanobot Rock.

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