RV Farms—the stage name for Daniel English—has been churning out singles since the beginning of 2016 in preparation for the release of six-song debut Pale. And while the Edmonton native has laid low until now, he’s looks set to burst onto the scene with his neatly packaged start.
Pale is poppy introspective modern folk at its smoothest. Acoustic guitars chime along with English’s half-dreamy vocals as music bubbles, sometimes literally, in the background—a touch finessed by Jeff Kynoch at Sound Extractor Studios.
Titular “Pale” looks back at young love, “another alibi to iron out the seams you left behind,” simplistically building tableaus against the plucking and strumming at chords before working itself into a fuzzy, knob-twirling interlude and shuffling into the lively, pronounced “Obvious Strands.”
The jazzy, electric touches on the second track lend themselves to the wispy, echoing bridge—linking up to English’s more mellow notes even as the digital chaos returns to slip the album into the clap-along catchiness of “Craters.”
“Sway” settles back into the quiet tones of English’s open, boosted up slightly by the mesmerizing kick of bass as the drums churn out their steady procession. Winding “Outdoor Ethics” keeps that flowing melody as it mixes in some of the coda whirls from previous songs and finally striking an ideal mixture of both.
Reverie-inducing “Bright Room” builds off that balance to wind down RV Farms’ debut. Echoing, altered vocals emphasize the sense of looking back that bookends the EP, even as English proves there’s plenty more to look forward to.
Top Track: “Bright Room”
Rating: Proud Hoot (Really Good)