Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Asher Brown -- Pitchforks

If you've been following this blog long enough, then you're already familiar with Asher Brown's music. Pitchforks centers on Brown's transition. His songs are simultaneously warm and heartbreaking -- especially given the current political context. Pitchforks' narrative follows an interesting trajectory: it begins with "Hey Little Abigail," a reassuring missive to his younger self that suggests that, after all, things do get better. But the tone gets a little more serious as the album progresses, particularly with the closer, "Brother in the Sky," in which Brown addresses a lost friend who encouraged him to be himself from a young age:

Where are you now
That I've become a man?
Where are you now?
Pitchforks are coming out
It's dangerous to be
A guy like me
I don't need an angel
I need you
By my side
My brother in the sky

While most artists would switch the order on these two songs, it seems to me that Brown is suggesting that even if he's in a better place, the future is still fraught with danger and uncertainty.

Pitchforks surely displays Brown's renewed confidence -- both personally and in his songwriting. One of my favorite parts of the album is that Brown re-recorded two songs from Go All In. While it's clear that all of Brown's songs come from the heart, it's clear that "Gamble" and "Angeline" came from somewhere deep. I hadn't listened to the album in quite some time, but when both songs came on I found I had remembered every word perfectly -- one of those mystical experiences where an intense feeling travels from one heart to the other, with words as a faulty medium. So it's a joy to hear songs that have been clearly meaningful to Brown accompanied by his true voice. Pitchforks isn't just a calling card -- it's one of those rare albums that perfectly encapsulates the inner life of the person creating it.

Asher Brown -- Official, Facebook, Spotify, Purchase from Asher Brown

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