‘Sticks & Stones’ – Little Red – fragile, understated and sparse yet it grows on you(January 15, 2015)
Folk-acoustic trio Little Red release their debut album ‘Sticks and Stones’, and from first listen there’s definitely something interesting to hear. It might take a while but each time around it gets more attractive as you start to move further into their naively unpretentious sound. That means you may have to work at it a bit but it is worth the effort. The prime point of impression is the slightly wavering, interwoven male and female vocals that skip softly across a collection of finger picked guitars. There’s a feeling reminiscent of a slightly otherworldly echo as the voices move through the music – fragile possibly, understated maybe, sparse definitely, and yet ‘Sticks and Stones’ consistently grows on you.
Their idiosyncratic mix leads into the lyrically dark opening ‘What Say You’, a disposition towards the shadows remains evident within ‘Cures’ and pretty much everything else. There’s something strangely enthralling about the sombre vocals reflecting their ambiance of gloomy meandering – ‘The Garden’ is a strong track but the sense of melancholy remains, the personalised, left-field take on the ‘Bonnie And Clyde’ narrative drops perfectly into their style, while ‘The Cause’ and‘Petal’ maintain the ethereal touch.
‘Sticks & Stones’ could never be called a ‘happy’ album, then again its sense of gloominess fits rather well with vocals, lyrics and instrumentation. It’s certainly an album that you should go for but be prepared to dedicate some time to find the rewards. Little Red are Ian Mitchell, Hayley Bell and Ben Gosling – ‘Sticks & Stones’ is released through All Will Be Well Records.
Reviewer: Charlie Elland