Paper Kites’ “States” Introduces Australian Indie Folk Band to the World

12 Dec

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Paper Kites is a five-member indie folk band from Australia. Founded by Sam Bentley and Christina Lacy, the group has quietly built a loyal following via the Web in Australia and elsewhere, and it released several EPs before its debut CD, States.

States is consistently great from start to finish. It’s one of those CDs that you can drop in, push play and enjoy every track — or put it on repeat or shuffle. While the band has a “sound,” the songs are not formulaic. Each track has its own personality, and there are many standouts in the collection. The various compositions sometimes recall a band such as Fleet Foxes or Bon Iver, while at other times Paper Kites’ sound may be closer to that of Freelance Whales.

The first single, “St. Clarity,” is an example of the latter — banjo-flavored indie folk that floats in the beginning, then adds a nice energetic rhythm to give the track some pace. “Malleable Beings,” the opening song on the CD, is mellower — a beautiful, slow-building soundscape layered with wistful vocals and nice harmonies.

The band’s current single, “Young,” features an amazing video that you simply have to see. Check it out right now.

While nine of the tracks feature frontman Bentley’s lead vocals, superb singer-guitarist, Lacy is given the lead on four tracks. Her exceptional voice is perhaps best showcased on “Living Colour,” a chill yet edgy tune with psychedelic overtones or “In Reverie,” a playful romp with a bigger guitar sound.

Australia has been producing some outstanding indie pop, rock and folk artists in recent years such as Husky — another of my favorites from the Land Down Under. States is a CD you may really want to add to your wish list this Christmas.

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