Archive for August, 2011|Monthly archive page

Introducing Young Legs: The Fog & The Forest

In Introducing on 12 August 2011 at 16:04

While the story itself is fictional, I used it as a vehicle for things I wanted to say to people and emotions I had been experiencing at the time. Obviously, I didn’t get dragged around by fog ghosts and then drown in a pond, but I was upset for the same reasons that brought the character to his damp yet educated fate. [Steven Donahue]

How far your feet can take you in thirty minutes without moving your body? Oh, you would be surprised. Just wait and see. Or rather listen. Anything you had in mind regarding tonight can wait. Whatever your plans were for next half an hour or so, let them loose. The only place you have to be is here. Seriously, stop. Take a deep breath. Let your bloodflow slow down for a moment and enjoy this feeling. It is priceless. Forget the present, do not think of the future. You are the carrier of amazing tales stored in your memory, hidden from the world. Some of them glorious, others heartbreaking. Set them free. Let’s go for a walk into these woods, let’s transform our flesh and bones into milky fog and spread ourselves around.

The person entirely responsible for Young Legs’ debut album is a twenty year old singer songwriter Steven Donahue. Regardless of his young age, this talented American does not laze around, as he also participates in variety of other projects including Rabbit Troupe and The Maple Faust. Guided by his own artistic sense and a wide range of influences extending from Phillip Glass to Elliott Smith, Steven recorded The Fog and the Forest with only a simple SM57 microphone and M-box on his hands. At first, there was no clear vision, just the need to put a whole thing together: When I set out to make it, I really had nothing in mind; my only aim was to make a solo album. After recording few tracks [By The Pond and Floating By The Edge among them], he gave up the idea for a while. There was something missing, he explains and then adds: About a month later I decided to go back and remove the excess to see what was left. I felt a thin connection emerge between By the Pond and Floating by the Edge and immediately a story started to write itself. The result is a six track album, a thirty minute long walk down the forgotten paths that never made it to any of existing maps. The forest is unpredictable: one moment it might appear as steady and quiet, only to become vivid with unexpected sounds and voices of invisible ghosts seconds later. The mood is hushed, slightly harsh acoustic with a twist. Vocals come in softly, painting pictures of uncertainty and longing. Inspirations shine through when you listen carefully: Elliott Smiths’ delicacy in something like a whisper with echoes of folk intimacy of Fleet Foxes and Bon Iver. Although I do believe a more adequate comparison would be Ramona Falls. Obviously, the use of instruments here is more limited than on Brent Knopf’s orchestral project, but there is a line connecting the two, both in shades of voice and details of background arrangement.

This is a story of a very young man who managed to pull off a raw yet brilliant masterpiece of sound on his own. You can almost see him threading his way through these woods, feel the naked branches scratching his cheeks. The fog thickens ruthlessly, dusk becomes the deepest of nights, but somewhere between shadows of trees and the demons he tries to escape, there is a glimmer of hope. This thin ray of light leading his way no longer comes from the outside. His silhouette illuminates the dark and when eventually he leaves the labyrinth behind, he brightens up even more. A beautiful soul this must be, you might think, when the last note reaches your ears. Yes, indeed.

In case you haven’t already, download  here http://younglegs.bandcamp.com/