Band: The Stanfields
Album: Vanguard of the Young and Restless
Label: Groundswell Music
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
By Aaron Binder
Irish drinking music has been around for centuries now, and all things considered, it really hasn’t changed much. It was re-popularized in the latter half of the 20th century as a political forum to express unrest and the hope for change with masterful stories and catchy songs.
More recently, with political unrest calming (if only slightly) in Ireland, most musicians have strayed toward telling folk stories and songs about drinking. The Stanfields new album, Vanguard of the Young and Restless, is really no different. The band hails from Nova Scotia and their small town, blue-collar upbringing is very evident in the storytelling.
Normally I’m not a fan of this style of music, but the stories contained within the songs are classic and so well done, it’s hard to remember an album in this style with such memorable and amazing lyrics. The simple delivery through lead singer Jon Landry’s gruff voice draws you into the story in a way that encapsulates your ears for the whole album. If you’ve never been to the East Coast of Canada, this album will bring you there, and not always in the way you expect. The stories mostly revolve around life in that area of the world, but sometimes take on a darker tinge and delve into topics that most people have thoughts about, but aren’t often spoken about in polite company. These guys are real taboo busters.
The music itself is similar to what you’d expect from the East Coast of Canada, it does take on a slightly sinister feel at times though in a great example of music and lyrics matching perfectly. The sound is sometimes frantic rock, sometimes Celtic style, mostly exceptional. There isn’t one boring track on the album and the fact that the band has managed to make a debut so incredibly engaging speaks volumes to the musical talent that is coming from Nova Scotia.
This is a band to check out now, their sound is uniquely theirs, their talent is unmatched in the genre, even from decade long veterans, and the band has hit the ground running with this album. If they can keep up the momentum, they’ll be one of the biggest bands in the country sooner than later.
This is by far the simplest song on the album, but it sure makes for a great video.