Great songs. Sparkling guitar riffs. Acoustic string instruments. Intricate vocal harmonies. The sheer fun of playing together. All these, and many more aspects, vie for your attention when listening to The Common Linnets’ latest release ‘II’. But the overriding impression is one of a band in complete unison. They are musicians who have discovered the power of togetherness and have created a sound that rings so true, you could be forgiven for thinking the group members have been working together for years.
This release is all killer, no filler, right from the opening track the no-holds-barred rock song ‘We Don’t Make The Wind Blow’, to the magnificent closing track ‘Proud’. Quality is the key, evidenced by tracks such as the spooky ‘Runaway Man’, the Crowded House inspired ‘That Part’, and the stately moving ‘Soho Waltz’. Did Ilse DeLange ever hit that high and lonesome sound so well as she does on ‘Days Of Endless Time’ supported by dobro and mandolin? But ‘II’ also offers ‘Hearts On Fire’, an irresistible up-tempo dance tune, and the steel strings of ballad ‘Dust Of Oklahoma’ plucking at heartstrings. The vocal harmonies reflect the influence of 1970’s West Coast groups such as Fleetwood Mac, Crosby, Stills and Nash & Young but ‘II’ is clearly in the Americana and alt-country vein. Small wonder, considering that the tracks were recorded in Nashville, Tennessee.
Ilse explains: “Our music grows organically and that is very important to me. We did not start out to score hits and get platinum records. It is all about our love for music and creating something that comes from the heart. I wanted to be free of all the expectations I have to deal with as a solo artist and be part of a band. Our new record has really improved on that score, so we’re heading in the right direction.”
A fantastic new record. A fully booked agenda for well into the next year. The future looks bright for The Common Linnets. Ilse sums up: “The main thing is the fun we are all having and that is something we want to hang on to. Whatever happens, we are in this together so things could not be better.”