Tall Tall Trees
A Wave Of Golden Things
There are unparalleled similarities between Mike Savino and Joe Williams. The defining moment on A Wave of Golden Things comes in the form of the song “Seven Shades of Blue.” Like Williams, Savino is a musician who can capture the warm tones of deep ambers and glowing embers of bronze lighting up an autumn evening in a soft glow of unfortunate life circumstances be it love lost or lonely persuasions.
The echoing of the guitar sets the pulse like a lighthouse beacon in the dead of night, haunting us with the ghosts of ‘60s R&B. “Don’t matter what you say anymore. Don’t matter what you do. There is nothing that can keep me here tonight, so I’m coming home to you.” This song is not a departure, giving in to the solace of his own mistakes, it’s a realization; better yet, it’s a homecoming of burnt warmth where musical teardrops stream down.
“There are days when I don’t feel myself. There are days when I feel blue.” Savino never falls out of the scope of life’s mental fragility. But it’s what we feel most comfort from.
Bob James once scored the perfect television theme song that, to me, is a defining moment of the 1970s. “Angela” became the “Theme from Taxi” and we fell in love with James’s delicate keystrokes and electric piano noodling, if you are privy to explore the full version of the song, which I highly recommend driving down that road. Savino takes the same approach while adding heavy reverb to the electric piano as much as he does to the guitar. Like an old Kodachrome photograph muddled by the warm glow of intruding light, the song’s bridge turns into an electric love affair of letting go. This is pop music grandeur. Your heart melts and with the song’s abrupt ending, it is this moment that makes you realize how amazing Tall Tall Trees can be. He can make you feel like you do when you listen to a Sam Cooke song. He can also make you feel delicate like a Frank Sinatra song in the wee hours.
The spectacle lies in Savino’s banjo work and songs like the opener “The Wind, She Whispers” or “Happy Birthday in Jail.” They both rely on dusty constructions of folktales woven through indie fodder.
I admit I can listen to “Seven Shades Of Blue” over and over again without losing that feeling of awe. The song makes it all worth it. Yet songs on A Wave Of Golden Things gives us perspective as to what Savino is capable of as a multi-instrumentalist and a strong songwriter.
- The Wind, She Whispers
- Happy Birthday in Jail
- Ask Me Again
- A Number of Signs
- Deep Feels
- Seven Shades of Blues
- A Wave of Golden Things