FED UP of folk yet? Folk yeah? These days you can’t move for the twang of a banjo, manly harmonies recorded in secluded cabins and talk of Blue Ridge Mountains. Well I have good news; there’s some more of it for you. Here’s Husky. But hang on in there, Australian band has created an interesting take on what you could call folk fusion, dabbling with pop and classical influences in debut album; Forever So. Opener Tidal Wave is a natural awakening to the album, with a calm tone and deep hums, Husky Gawenda’s voice softly floats through like tissue paper. The track has an easy, lush melody that will nest in your head on first listen, taking a moment to break into a funky psychedelia. If Husky were out to prove they’re more than folk, they’ve done it.
The Woods plays host to a Cuban piano melody scattered over fairytale lyrics, Dark Sea has a powerful climbing 80’s rock composition and Farewell (in 3 parts) makes room for a delicate ballad and brass finale. Compared to the other tracks on the album; History’s Door might appear bland, but the song shows Husky at their finest, unafraid of a simple catchy chorus: (and when did we stop needing something to sing a long to?) No, it’s a warm pop arrangement backed by mystical hums and traditional folk vibes.
Strategically placed breaks are a signature of Forever So. They cut into tracks like an uncontrollable tick as if to prove Husky’s uniqueness and vast arrange of styles. It’s sometimes like cramming together mismatched jigsaw pieces, it’s never going to work and it’s not always needed, but it’s always a surprise. Forever So plays like a CV; ‘look at all the good stuff we can do!’ It’s often overwhelming, but to be fair I find it refreshingly unique. Newly nestled between fellow Sub Pop artists like Fleet Foxes and Iron and Wine, Husky are hardly outcasts on the label, they’re the weird kids, but I’m pretty sure they’ll get invited to more parties. Husky have done an album of Dr Frankenstein proportions, picking an assortment of sounds and influences until Forever So became very much alive, less gore, but with the same amount of guts.
Reviewed for Incendiary Magazine. Published online: 11th June 2012