reviewed by Laura Stanley
“‘Cause I feel twenty-five and it never was that way. Something changed inside my heart, now I’m unsure of everything.” This line taken from the opener of Aidan Knight’s sophomore record Small Reveal suggests a maturity and growth that usually happens at a much later age than twenty-five. Despite what might not seem like a monumental age, Victoria’s Aidan Knight proves to listeners that it is to him in his latest record that has an undoubtedly new and mature sound.
With a full band now part of the Aidan Knight team, dubbed The Friendly Friends, Colin Nealis, Olivier Clements, David Barry, and Julia Wakal are an essential part to the new record, adding a dreamy and unique baroque-folk-pop sound that compliments Knight’s craft perfectly.
“Dream Team,” the opener and source of the previously quoted lyric, is quickly to become a favourite. Beginning quietly, highlighted by the wails of a violin, and building to a boisterous end, “Dream Team” is an introduction to Small Reveal that’s hard not be captivated with.
Musically, the progression of “Dream Team” is one that weaves in and out of Small Reveal. At times the band embraces these slow-jam feelings (“Skip”) while at other points, they let loose with loud instrumental sections (the ending of “You Will See the Good in Everyone).
In another highlight, “Creatures Great & Small” is one of the most melodious offerings and proves to be a moment of liberation from some of the album’s more mysterious and solemn songs, thanks to the choir like end verse of “creatures great and small.”
Compared to Versicolour, Knight’s songwriting takes a skilled turn in the new record as Knight shows off his strengths in story-like songwriting. Behind the shimmer sounds of “A Mirror,” Knight writes in a female perspective, a great twist to the record, while in arguably the albums most touching song, “Margaret Downe,” Knight writes a simplistic acoustic love story for breathtaking results.
The only thing that listeners will find disappointing with this new record is there’s a feeling that it’s over far too soon. With Small Reveal, it’s as if one moment you’re part of the dream team while the next you’re another person tossed like a nickel by Margaret Downe – all part of the lush construct Knight’s album possesses.
In a big reveal of the incredible talents of Aidan Knight and his band as a whole, Small Reveal marks an already remarkable chapter in a career just taking off for this gifted artist.
Small Reveal is available on Bandcamp.
Top Tracks: “Dream Team,” “Creatures Great & Small,” “Margaret Downe”
Rating: Hunting Call (Excellent) +*swoop*