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Hearts of Oak: New England

New England

(Hearts of Oak)
Release Date: 
Tuesday, August 19, 2014
During my time of writing music reviews I've come across all the usual styles of music as well as having some new ones that I've never heard of before. While listening to the album, "New England", the third album by the country group Hearts of Oak, I learned of yet another new style of music. This new style is called, "shoegazer country", which from what I can find is supposed to be distorted guitars and riffs being played. Hearts of Oak might be considered a shoegazer country, they do have a whole different technique in playing country music, but I wouldn't say that they are distorted in the way they sound. 
I really enjoyed this album by Hearts of Oak, which considering that it's country music, I was suprised that I did enjoy it as much as I did. Even though they do have a country sound and feel to their songs, it's nothing like anything that would be played on the radio. This band has a style that is unique, different, and so refreshing that it actually makes me want to like country music. That is if there is more country music with this sound. These songs have a home grown sound to them where they give me a nastolgic feel or that they are what America is supposed to be in songs. 
THe vocals of Nate Wallace is what really give these songs their appeal. His raspy voice fits well with the emotion of the songs and it also sounds good. He's able to give this songs their own personality and feeling. While he does give the songs the heart, it's the guitars that makes these songs emotional. Each song is played slow where they even have this downhome country droll to them that is just amazing. Each song has a different sound while keeping that slow, easy listening country flavor to them. I don't know how this band has slipped under the radar with two other albums but with the way they play and sing, Hearts of Oak to me is what country music should be.
Lee Roberts
Review by Lee Roberts
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