Big Thief - Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You
Feb 20, 2022
While I have yet to listen to the entirety of the Big Thief discography 'Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You' is probably the best album that I've heard from them thus far. A few years back when Nostalgia put me on to their 2019 album 'Two Hands', I remember really enjoying when I first heard it, but it's an album that I seldom returned to that often but that album did leave an impression on me as I loved the tranquil nature of it overall and it made Big Thief stand out to me in the Folk scene, mainly because of Adrianne Lenker's unique vocals. Adrianne Lenker's most recent solo material was also really good when I heard them back around their release date but much like 'Two Hands' I haven't really returned to those records, who knows maybe that's just how Folk works for me but either way when I saw that Big Thief had a new album around the corner I was very much interested in hearing it, the length of the album may have left me sceptical at first but either way I was optimistic that this would at the very least be a substantial Folk release, and to be fair my expectations were exceeded by the group this time around since 'Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You' is really great if you ask me!

It's not a perfect album by any means, for one I feel like there's tracks and ideas scattered in the middle and latter half of the album that just feel redundant and don't really stand out to me as much in the way of anything memorable or unique in the tracklist. I mean this is definitely a common criticism that I usually have with Folk records so I was expecting this but I digress since that's the only main criticism I have for 'Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You', everything else about it is at the very least great. The entire album is a very intimate and warm experience but it leaves so much to take away given its more catchy and infectious tunes, the moments when they break into more Alt Country-isms like on 'Spud Infinity' in particular are just so fun, charming and infectious. Tinges of Neo-Psych and Americana break into the sound of this album too and the group use this to add a dynamic to the songs to keep them engaging and it's done incredibly well by the acoustic instrumentation. Adrianne Lenker's unique vocals and fantastic songwriting cannot go understated either since she shines all over this record, she rarely steps out of her comfort zone but to be honest that doesn't really bother me that much since she sounds great over the songs and provides some great melodies and lyrics.

The tracklist itself contains some genuinely perfect songs, moments like 'Time Escaping', 'Spud Infinity', 'Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You', 'Sparrow' and 'Simulation Swarm' are some of these perfect songs that come to mind and they've been the tracks that have stuck with me the most on consecutive listens. Even the tracks that I don't particularly find memorable are the very least solid tracks but thereafter the quality is just insanely great to perfect. It's very consistent on that merit alone and for an album that's an hour and 20 minutes long it sure as hell doesn't feel like it.

I don't think I have more to add here, despite the few shortcomings it has this new Big Thief album is fantastic, there's so many brilliant tracks to be found on here and I'd consider it to be an essential record not only in 2022, but also in modern Folk.

Best Tracks: Spud Infinity, Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe and Simulation Swarm
Worst Track: 12,000 Lines

MickyT's Tags
Really solid review :)
@ClayDJs03 cheers :)
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