Zachary Cale, Noise of Welcome – CD Review

The first thought that enters my mind when I listen to this album is “Jayhawks”.  The voice, the folksy slow melodies, the sort of wandering lyrics… all very reminiscent to me of the music of the Jayhawks.

This easygoing album casually strolls from song to song with a few highs intertwined for good measure.  It brings me back to the folksy albums of the past.  Zachary’s hypnotic voice draws you into the stories he tells and the backing vocals add a kind of warmth to the album.  Even just the photo on the album cover gives a warm welcome to any who pick up the album.  The details in the photograph bring character and depth to the album before you even listen once.  It prepares you for what is to come.

What stands out most of this album is that in a true folk style, Zachary makes use of his acoustic guitar throughout.  Each not he strums is felt as the gentle background of instruments and vocals comes into play.  The lyrics seem heartfelt and sincere in the way they are presented.  Some songs such as “Hello Oblivion” even find the hum of the background to be something a little eerie or haunting.  The melodies on this album can cause a chill on even the warmest of summer days if you truly listen to the soul of each song.

Some songs on this album even have the power to enchant you without any lyrics at all.  The purely instrumental first track “Dead Channel Overture” as well as “Nocturne In G Minor” are both experiments in the tranquil.

As every album has a natural ebb and flow to it, so does this one.  In some songs you even hear the gentle twang of guitar similar to the old country stylings.  Noise of Welcome brings the modern alternative folksy style into the past to meet its country predecessors.