Nashville – There’s so much to love about the local music scene here, from the traditional sounds to newer, fresher faces flocking to the city. This week, however, Music City natives Humming House have distinguished themselves outside of a local level with their newest release, Revelries (out this week via Rock Ridge Music). Following in the same vein as the band’s 2012 self-titled release, Revelries emerges from Nashville’s long-standing country roots to come into its own and into a work that is fully realized. The influence is clear, but the five-piece is not your typical country band, if you could even call them country at all by today’s standards.
Best known for blending together the sounds of the south—country, folk, soul, bluegrass—Humming House provides a modern perspective on the traditional instruments and arrangements that have made up the region’s musical backbone for years. Upbeat and even epic, Revelries is a welcome reprieve from the overly processed sounds that are becoming more ubiquitous. And while many acoustic sets can be sleepy and sluggish, Humming House’s aesthetic is full of energy and entirely enjoyable.
And Humming House doesn’t waste any time to show off this energy with Revelries—the album takes a running start with its opener, “Run With Me,” and doesn’t stop from there. Both confident and encouraging, the ten songs that follow “Run With Me” continue to sustain that same bold approach and brazen feeling. Right from the beginning, you feel the unabashed spirit and soul the group pours into their music. It’s a vulnerable place, but straightforward and definitely authentic.
Fans of Mumford and Sons or The Head and the Heart will find something to love in Humming House, and especially in Revelries. The vocals are beautifully honest and the mandolin plays a principle role in the band’s music. Though bluegrass appears as a bold influence in their sound, nothing is too heavy handed, and each instrument finds its perfect place within the song. “Fly On (Forever Is Better With You)” is a perfect example of this balance—the pace is just right (but not predictable), the content tender, and the fiddle provides the perfect grounding device in that southern sound. This is a song that’s comforting, and even reliable in its likeability—something that nearly everyone can get behind.
The spirit of Nashville is flawlessly captured within Revelries and the band at large. Not only does Humming House pay homage to the musical roots that made the city what it is today, but they also embody what’s been called the new Nashville—a city that’s becoming more diverse and wholly innovative. In my opinion, it’s not easy to make country or southern music palatable considering the concentrated twang, but Humming House achieves exactly that with Revelries. There’s a symbiosis that exists between the city and the band, and I can’t wait to see how the two begin to shape each other in the future.
Following this latest album, Humming House will continue to tour the U.S. until early May. Find out where they’ll be playing next via Facebook.
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