Timber Timbre - Creep On Creepin' On
Creep On Creepin’ On is an aptly titled record that matches the sweet but naggingly sinister croon of principle singer-songwriter Taylor Kirk with a darker, denser and more confident approach to instrumentation than has appeared previously on a Timber Timbre album.
As on previous efforts, the primary punch of the album is delivered via Kirk’s distinctive deep voice and crisp, echoing enunciation, which coaxes listeners to the edge of someplace very dark indeed. Prominent vocals on songs such as ‘Black Water,’ ‘Lonesome Hunter’ and the title track are accompanied by basic piano chords played over subdued rhythm sections, and all would make fitting selections for a demented enchantment under the sea dance. While these songs are strong, welcome entries in Timber Timbre’s catalogue, there is an accompanying difficult to shake feeling that much of this ground has already been covered by the group.
But there is occasionally an increased emphasis on musical experimentation helps to overcome the slight feelings of familiarity. This sense of experimentation is most notable on the album’s two instrumentals, ‘Obeslisk’ and ‘Swamp Magic,’ which demonstrate that Timber Timbre are also adept at creating an unsettling ambience without relying on Kirk’s vocals. Both songs layer foreboding strings and piano among unusually distinct percussion, and both include the kinds of shots usually reserved for horror films. The instrumentals also differentiate themselves in terms of volume, replacing normally reserved levels with dominating crescendos.
Dark though Creepin’ On may be, Kirk knows just when to pull the listener back from the edge, such as the unexpected swell that elevates ‘Swamp Magic’ from its oppressive nadir. All told, the album never commits fully to darkness, instead evoking the slightly deranged sense of joy that stems from playing at the edge of the precipice.
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