I have been sitting on this review for some time now. You see, my fellow Somewhere Cold music junkie Jason asked me to review Early Day Miner‘s gorgeous 2002 disc Let Us Garlands Bring (knowing how much I loved it) for the Secretly Canadian spotlight. Long time readers of this site will recognize Let Us Garlands Bring as the full-length cd of the year for 2002, as selected by our site, for it’s moody atmosphere, intricate arrangements, and subtle tension. Let Us Garlands Bring was the soundtrack of my autumn, which, in Southern Ontario (where I live), is a time of chilled air, rustling leaves, and shortening sunlight. Early Day Miners carried me through the long harsh winter with ambiguous tales wrapped in delicate drones and meandering guitar lines. However, to come back, months into the summer, and relisten to the disc I fawned over last year proved to be almost an unattainable task, with my various duties clamoring for my attention.
Nevertheless, here I am, in the heat of a muggy summer afternoon, listening to the music that soothed my soul so in cooler times. And, even coming back to listen to this cd after a while, in completely different circumstances, it still holds up as an excellent display of patient, quiet and restrained music. On Let Us Garlands Bring, Early Day Miners craft mellow jams of song that conjure up images of campfires, log cabins, and the wide open sky. The songs sound just like that: jams, as the guitar melodies intertwine with tasteful percussion, sparse keys and strings. The music is at once simple and complex, humble and performed with remarkable dexterity, all the while accompanied by Dan Burton‘s wistful, slightly hushed voice. Standout tracks for me include the dazzling “Slivergate”, with it’s drone prelude and effected guitars, and “Offshore” with its slow-burn approach to the cd’s loudest and most energetic climax.
Clearly then, Let Us Garlands Bring should be a cd that somewherecold listeners should immediately purchase. It is the epitome of sad, slow, atmospheric music, and is a delight to listen to, whatever the season, and whatever the situation. In Let Us Garlands Bring, listeners find a consistently pretty, delicate and intricate cd that rewards repeated listens. What else can I say: it was my favorite cd of 2002. Get it now.