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3.8 out of 5 stars12
3.8 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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The Deep Dark Woods are a band of trusted collaborators from Saskatoon comprising lead singer Ryan Boldt who writes most of the lyrics, and ably supported by Chris Mason, Lucas Goetz and new addition guitarist Clayton Linthicum. They provide further evidence that there must be a conveyor belt somewhere in Canada dedicated to producing the spiritual heirs to Neil Young. Undoubtedly Deep Dark Woods owe a huge debt to old Shakey not least in terms of the opener to this album "Miles and Miles" being hewn from a source which any one with the most remote interest in music would recognise. If it was a stick of rock it would have "'Crazy Horse" emblazoned inside when you bite it. But as the album develops there are wider influences at play drawn out in the production of "Jubilee" by the man of the moment Jonathan Wilson. The pounding "18th of December" for example harks back to the Band, while "Pictures on my wall" has a hint of Roy Orbison. With song titles like "I took to Whoring" and "Bourbon Street" you don't need to be Hercule Poriot to guess the sort of lyrical themes contained in Jubilee. Equally Jonathan Wilson locates their sound bang in the middle of classic 1970s American rock with the ten minute plus "The Same thing" wearing its Grateful Dead influences firmly on a protruding sleeve harking part very effectively to that laid back flowing guitar style.

Whilst a very referential approach to music there is enough on "Jubilee" which is contained within a meticulous sounding album to bring good cheer to any music lover. Firstly the songs are very well written. The funky "Red Red Rose" echoes Little Feat via Levon Helm but then why don't more bands plough this funky rock furrow? The sombre ballad "Its been a long Time" is a nice eerie quality which is also displayed on "Pacing the Room" a bitter tale of break up where the songs protagonist sings "I am leaving this country/ My bag's in my hand / I'm leaving sweet Susie / The finest in the land / Her father he hates me / He says I'm too poor / Now I'm pacing the room / and I'm bitter to the core / I'm pacing the room `cause of you.". Certainly there are occasions where the band slip over the line where their sound is just too derivative. Thus the "Beater" could be a long lost Neil Young song. But on the whole this is a album of quality Americana that shows a band with an encyclopaedic list of influences which are generally used to good effect and at its best there is a timeless quality to "Jubilee".
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on 14 November 2013
.... for me, this does not beat their last album The Place I Left Behind, which was magnificent and was my most played last year. It does have great moments though, as you would expect. I was so looking forward to this: the Jonathan Wilson production, the references to vintage keyboards and psychedelia, but the songs seem to lack the passion and fire of their earlier work (or do I need to listen more?), and I miss the brilliant songs, guitar, pedal steel and fiddle - and mellotron! - from the previous album. It seems all my favourite artists have one truly great album in them - I can understand why they need to move on - and then I forever crave for a repeat, and sadly (for me) this wasn't it.
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on 21 November 2014
This is my second Deep Dark Woods album and having previously loved 'The Winter Hours' i was expecting great things, but this album took quite some time before i fully appreciated it & ultimately i don't think it's quite as good.
I found it was best experienced in a quiet environment as it has an overriding downbeat/mournful tone.
It opens with a peculiar, out of character track 'miles & miles' which to be honest is a bit of an overlong 'dirge' complete with echoey strained high vocals but things thankfully revert to the anticipated Americana thereafter.
As you'd hope there's plenty of lovely guitar and keyboard work throughout but although there's the occasional jaunty number e.g 'red red rose' i found the overall sound a little too depressing.
7 out of 10.
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on 29 October 2013
Killer new album from the DDW...these guys are amazing.. Beautiful lyrics, haunting tunes...great beards. Buy this, buy the last one..keep going.
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on 17 December 2013
A good record but not as immediately catchy as some of their earler stuff. Looking forward to seeing them live in February.
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on 30 July 2015
a modern classic , beautiful production , and the playing is superb, give it a go you wont be dissapointed
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on 2 November 2013
Last year I bought their last album called "The Place I Left Behind" on CD. I was so impressed I bought it on double vinyl too. Since then hardly a day has passed without me playing at least one track. The songs are great, with impressive lyrics and tunes together with excellent production and recording quality.
On the strength of that album I bought this latest release "Jubilee" on double vinyl the moment I discovered it. I was expecting more of the same but oh dear I'm so disappointed. The sound is woolly, laid back mournful sounding songs with vocals sometimes difficult to make out. The songs aren't a patch on the previous album and they're sometimes a bit indulgent but my main gripe is the production which isn't very good at all. Side 1 is very forgettable, Side 2&3 OK and Side 4 a complete mess, mainly due to excessively long and boring tracks. I won't be playing it very often I suspect.
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on 31 July 2015
All Good. Many thanks!
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on 2 April 2016
A good album.
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on 9 April 2014
I had not read that this was a U.S. seller, and so it took way longer than I had expected, missing the recipient's birthday by over a week. I can't really blame the seller for this, as I should've been more vigilant! Great album at a great price
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