Magnolia Collective, “Ghost Stories”
North Carolina’s Magnolia Collective are a force to be reckoned with. The band’s debut EP entitled “Ghost Stories,” is made up of six well-crafted, beautifully arranged songs that whisk the listener away on a heartfelt and almost cosmic 23-minute-long journey. Some times, it is a dark ride in broken, stolen cars past barren, dusky hillsides. Other times, the dreamy darkness gives way to star spangled skies of falsetto and guitar.
The opening track, “Stolen Car” comes on like a heist gone wrong. The immediacy of the heartache being relayed is only heightened by Daniel Snyder’s vocals. At one point he states, “Drinking with the Devil, he never wears the same face twice.” In or out of context, the line is elegant. And it’s this elegance and attention to detail that lift these songs far above so many folk/alt country bands currently churning out songs.
“Heartbreak, Texas” is another prime example of this skill. It’s slow and haunting build about star-crossed love paints a portrait with brush strokes so tiny, one has to step back in order to gauge the full scope of the piece.
There are too many great moments on this EP to mention. Simply put, the songs are strong and often lovely. And at the end of the 23 minute ride, the only problem is that it’s over.
The Magnolia Collective play The Cave in Chapel Hill, NC January 27 with John Howie Jr. and the Rosewood Bluff.