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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Twisted Tales
The Handsomes' continue their "happy" journey though the wilderness with this album, more tales of the shimmering mists and dim caves. Oddly this sounds like olde English Folk, rather than Americana in a lot of places. A great selection of songs and Rennies lyrics are again very well observed, humorous and timelessly old fashioned.

Stand out songs for me the...
Published on 24 May 2013 by retroandy

versus
1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great band
Not as good as the music from 'true Detective' would have you believe...(and that was remixed for the series) a bit samey but if you;re in the mood for doomy stuff...
Published 13 months ago by Simon Crutchley


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Twisted Tales, 24 May 2013
By 
retroandy (Banbury, UK.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Wilderness (Audio CD)
The Handsomes' continue their "happy" journey though the wilderness with this album, more tales of the shimmering mists and dim caves. Oddly this sounds like olde English Folk, rather than Americana in a lot of places. A great selection of songs and Rennies lyrics are again very well observed, humorous and timelessly old fashioned.

Stand out songs for me the jolly "Woodpecker" alluding to Mary Sweeney who I first heard about in the book/movie Wisconsin Death Trip and the great sea-shanty-documentry, about the strange powers of the Octopus ("...thats why I try and stay away from sea-shore holidays"). Glow-worm sees Brett once again (Bottomless Hole style) descending into the unknown, albeit with a bigger budget this time. A Jules Verne style highlight of another great album.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not quite up to par - merely brilliant, 13 July 2013
By 
J. M. Marshall "Touchwood" (Redcar, NE England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wilderness (Audio CD)
Hugely enjoyable wih many memorable tracks, and with a consistency of quality that was occasionally lacking in some earlier albums, this is a welcome addition to their work. Having said that, again unlike some of their earlier work there aren't any real "stand-out" tracks. If you're a fan you'll love it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Nice Album, 22 Feb. 2015
By 
M. Dowden (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wilderness (Audio CD)
In some ways I find Brett and Rennie Sparks, the couple behind ‘The Handsome Family’ slightly ironic. After all considering where both these came from in the US their music and style doesn’t sit quite right, after all these songs are more what you would expect coming from a Southern born and bred group.

This album has song names after animals, but this isn’t some animal based album as such, as there are many references to real people and events, making this slightly surreal. For some I know that they find this group slow and melancholic, and also quite dark, which is why I like them.

Brett writes the music whilst his wife Rennie writes the lyrics, which can be very thoughtful. Of course with Brett and his baritone voice singing through here it is quite shocking at times how low this man can sing. This I would definitely say is nowhere near their very best, but it is still a lovely piece of Americana, that is quite haunting, and dare I say slightly hypnotic in places.

This group is touring over here next month, but if you want to see them please check out their venues. The London venue is I believe already sold out, and I think a couple of other venues have been moved to other locations, so please do check out the listings on-line if you wish to see this group.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great addition, 31 July 2013
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This review is from: Wilderness (Audio CD)
While it is always going to be difficult to top such greats as Through the Trees and In the Air, this is still a great addition to the family's canon. I saw them in concert in Hammersmith and Brett had a great rapport with the audience. If you like slightly off kilter Americana, you'll love this. In my opinion they round off the big three in the same company as Lambchop and Willard Grant Conspiracy - enjoy.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Up to their usual standard, 20 July 2013
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This review is from: Wilderness (MP3 Download)
I was disappointed initially with Wilderness as it sounded very much like other HF albums with no stand out tracks and it seemed as though the HF were going through the motions. However, after repeated listenings I have grown to like it very much.The lyrics are excellent, with each song having an animal theme but are often about the weird and quirky behaviour of humans- one song, for example, being about a woman who went round smashing windows. Catch the HF live if you can- their on stage banter is very funny.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The quirky family are back!, 15 Jun. 2014
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This review is from: Wilderness (Audio CD)
I would recommend this to anyone who likes their music on the strange side! Like many, I came across The Handsome Family after their success with the True Detective music. I have since seen them live and explored other albums. I love it, although it is nothing lke my usual taste in music, as I'm not a huge country fan. Give it a try!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Quirky but genius too., 8 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: Wilderness (MP3 Download)
Another beauty from the Harlins. More quirky than usual but all the trademarks of this exceptional duo are there, the great craftsmanship allied to sly humour. If you like this band and don't already have it buy it now.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Animal themed concept album with macabre images & humour, 22 May 2013
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This review is from: Wilderness (Audio CD)
Husband and wife duo Brett and Rennie Sparks have been creating their own unique brand of Americana for over 20 years now. She always looks rather goth like with dark hair and ruby lips, a witchy woman, and is responsible for writing the lyrics.He has a bigger more rotund frame with a bushy greying beard, a distinctive baritone voice, and is reponsible for the music. Each track is named with a single word title of an animal,such as opener Flies, and others like Frogs,Woodpecker, Gulls,Octopus etc. There are a few guest musicians playing a supporting role, but it is basically the husband and wife duo continuing to plough their own unique musical furrow. The imagery of Wilderness and wildlife contained within the album is strangely skewed and all rather surreal, as is the norm for the Handsome Family. They have quirky takes on life, unusual black humour stories, and this continues their past track record. I don't think it will be likely to win many new converts, but if like me you are already smitten by their unique take on life, quite unlike anyone else around, then I am sure you will enjoy this latest installment in their fine catalogue of discs. It is not necessarily their best album, but it continues their unusual take on life, and is a fine new addition, and they are currently on a brief tour in the UK , so there maybe a chance to catch them live somewhere nearby. The album cover artwork is by Renee, and is an accompanying visual compendium of the animals named on each track.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 1 Sept. 2014
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This review is from: Wilderness (Audio CD)
weird strange different but some tracks are great
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 26 Oct. 2014
By 
Mrs. J. Gietzen (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wilderness (Audio CD)
Good to hear something new from them.
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Wilderness
Wilderness by The Handsome Family
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