There is nothing more tragic than Edison Woods, and they had me hooked from the first note. Dark, with a pretty pop-jazz influence, this New York band doesnt seem to want to write an upbeat song, even in their instrumentals. But this has to be part of the appeal, a similar disparity that first drew us to bands such as Radiohead. The song Vivian even resembles a song that could have been done by them in a lot of ways.
However, other little comparisons can be drawn, thanks to a sound that I have not heard for some time now, one that is a throw back to World War era smoky nightclubs. Led by Julia Froda who, is from a small town in Northern California with an unusual prevalence of two-step saloons and Wurlitzer organs, David Berger, Christian Biegai, Jason Dimatteo, Noah Hoffeld, Maxim Maxon, and Noe Venable fill out the sound, providing a backdrop of strings, piano, and reeds along with the usual band instruments.
Edisons latest single, The Gardener, plays like a somber love story, and sets a dream-like feel for the rest of the tracks. Last Night I Dreamt I Lay could almost be used in a Broadway play for how theatrical it sounds. Solemn violins and slow jazzy drums work with a sultry saxophone to provide a perfect backing for her beautifully cryptic voice.
Baby Doll is one of those break-up ballads that strongly resemble something Sarah McLachlan could have done in another life. Just a soft beat and simple piano set the tone of this lullaby for the broken hearted. The wonderful instrumental Seven Principles of Leave no Trace is another piano ballad that seems to be the only track that ends with an ounce of hope for the singer/songwriter.
Beyond the sad songs and dreamy vocals, Edison gets her indie credentials by gaining notoriety from her MySpace page and three albums since 2001. In fact, going one step forward, the band is currently releasing a new song for download each month.
In other words, don’t be surprised if Ms. Woods pops up on a few must-listen lists over the next coming months.
“You Are Bright”