Saying the latest cd from Saskatchewan’s The Deep Dark Woods is an album stockpiled with songs of regrets, murders and laments is like saying water is wet. That said, I have no qualms opening this piece up saying that their new album, The Place I Left Behind, is stockpiled with great songs about regrets, murders and laments. Nope, no qualms whatsoever.
I’ve said this a few times on the radio show but I don’t know that I’ve ever typed it here, but there has to be something in the water up in Canada that makes them boys able to pump out some serious music that I like to refer as “grumpy old Canadian’s music”. So, as far as “grumpy old Canadian” music goes, you could make the argument the The Deep Dark Woods are the hood ornament for the sound (will all due respect to NQ Arbuckle).
Ryan Boldt (guitar), Burke Barlow (guitar), Chris Mason (bass), and Lucas Goetz (drums) all share songwriting and vocal duties within the band, but I’d say it works since it’s pretty difficult to differentiate between the songwriters when you’re hearing the songs. Musically, you could call them brooding electric folk and maybe even a little country, but you’d never describe it as dense. A little while back RSV was complaining that The Horrible Crowes album felt unfinished musically, and I suspect that this album has that “finished without being crowded” feel he was looking for in that album. I think The Place I Left Behind proves that The Deep Dark Woods are the New England Patriots of this extension of the Willard Grant Conspiracy sound they’re helping to create. And, yeah, it’s Essential Listening too.