Hometown: Boston, MA
Influences: Radiohead, Louis Cole, Nick Drake
Sounds like: Punch Brothers, Bon Iver, Fleet Foxes
Recorded in May 2017 in the mountain town of Hope, Idaho, Baerd’s new album Crete seems an aural testament to the hillsides in which its songs were conceived. Steeped in elusive but firm folk sensibilities, it sees the Boston-based band expanding in depth, both thematically and melodically, beyond their previous releases.
Lead single and title track Crete is no exception, proffering a tectonic, ever-building incursion into tangled introspection in its self-contained pursuit of esotericism. Written largely while camping in South Dakota, “Crete” – based conceptually off the Greek myth of King Minos and the labyrinth in which he hid his shame – sees singer/songwriter Isaiah Beard discussing his penchant for rationalizing the irrational: hiding complex emotions during stressful situations using walls of outward intellectualism.
Beneath intricate folk-prog arrangements and surging harmonic movements that bring to mind baroque-pop iterations of Fleet Foxes or Tallest Man on Earth, Beard uses “Crete” to regard himself reflexively, examining the past to envision a future in which he need no longer construct mazes of “intellectual bullshit” to hide his feelings.
Ultimately, It serves as a reminder. Beard hopes that Crete, suffused with folk stylings as it is, can help listeners connect honestly with their feelings – like it does for him. “I hope people can get lost – and found – in it,” he says.