eMusic Review 0
No one does delicate quite like Justin Ringle. Over the course of three records as Horse Feathers — a remarkably silly name for a band as earnest as his — Ringle has managed to stir heartstrings with just a gentle brush of his fingertips. His songs have a John Denver kind of warmth, at once familiar and comforting, tender celebrations of simple pleasures, like a warm hearth or a robin's song. Thistled Spring doesn't fiddle too much with the formula he perfected on 2008's masterful House With No Name; there are still plenty of twirling acoustic guitars and see-sawing strings, but the mood here is lighter and has a gentle, first-rays-of-sunshine glow.
Case in point: "Starving Robins," which moves slowly from rustling banjo to big orchestral rush right back down to rustling banjo — dying embers to roaring blaze and back again. If Ringle had a tendency to ball up his songs in the past, on Spring he's more willing to let them expand — even if only slightly. "As a Ghost" opens as a tender, strummed weeper, but soon the violin and piano swoop in, and it feels instead like Ringle is ready to swing 'round from one partner to… read more »