Iron and Wine: Kiss Each Other Clean

Album review
Iron and Wine: Kiss Each Other Clean

Iron and Wine

Kiss Each Other Clean

Label: Warner
Media: CD
Genre: Rock/pop

Basically a solo artist (Sam Beam) with a group name, Iron and Wine had a rustic sound on its first two full-length releases; sonically The Shepherd’s Dog broadened the palette, and now Kiss Each Other Clean aims to recreate the early-70s “AM Goldsound. “It sounds like the music people heard in their parents’ car growing up,” is Beam’s description—though there’s plenty of hipper stuff too, including tight grooves, edgy sax, and keyboards that summon up old P-Funk albums. With its airy vocal harmonies, softly strummed acoustic guitars, and mellow vibe, “Tree By The River” ushers in the old soft-rock sound. “Monkeys Uptown,” “Half Moon,” “Godless Brother in Love,” and “Glad Man Singing” evoke a similar nostalgia; while listening, I flash back to my 70s high school days, when my friends and I would park a car out in the country, drink beer, and simply enjoy being in the moment. I suspect that’s part of the appeal of “AM Gold” for Beam: his sunny melodies, warm narratives, and lyrics celebrating natural beauty hearken back to a simpler and more innocent time. Even if a bit romanticized, KEOC’s gentle, well-recorded voices singing over a rich soundscape trump the cold, hard truth. 

More Info

  • primary artist, Iron and Wine
  • CD

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