Open Field :: O.F. II


With very little accompanying hype, Kenneth Stephenson (formerly of the underrated NC band The Kingsbury Manx) has been releasing music on Bandcamp under the Open Field moniker for a few years now. But these fully realized, downright masterful records deserve a lot more hype! Dive into O.F. II, a marvelous collection that pairs pastoral psychedelia (sometimes recalling the folkier side of pre-Dark Side Pink Floyd) with pleasingly skewed Americana. The “Ghost Riders in the Sky” gallop of “W.B. In Reverse” is a perfect example of the approach, with Stephenson’s hushed vocals floating into a wordless Morricone-esque chorus over Eric Haugen’s gorgeous pedal steel accents. Things get weird, too; check out the woozy “Hybrid Children,” with its Vocoder vocals and bursts of spiky Television-esque guitar. Best of all is the lonesome chug of “Blood Circus,” a number that feels both warmly nostalgic and slightly ominous, filled with those lost moments that drift in and out of our memories. The echo of days has rarely sounded this good. words / t wilcox

Open Field :: Blood Circus

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