Fox & The Bird

Floating Feather Self-released

Dallas' favorite collective of folk heroes, Fox & The Bird, left very little to chance before releasing their debut full-length album. They took their time. Thus, given that the band, in its various incarnations, has been performing around the region for a few years, the charming Floating Feather doesn't have the raw feel of a debut.

The solid-from-beginning-to-end album doesn't possess the sometimes clumsy sound of a debut either, thanks to some serious road-testing of the material. Loosely fitting under the vintage umbrella of neo-folk, this well-thought-out group of tunes boasts a variety that never seems cobbled together by force. Instead, a spirit of unity between the album's sonic traits and the group's comfort with the material shines powerfully.

Since few of these songs are new to those who have seen the band perform, it's another impressive feat that nothing here seems tired, even in the least. The ways in which trademark tunes such as "Hey, Sister" (complete with its coyote howl) and the trumpet-intensive "Rome" sound every bit as engaging on record as they do live says about as much about the overall quality of the band and their new album as anything.

 
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