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The New Mexican's Weekly Magazine of Arts, Entertainment & Culture Friday, July 25, 2014

WOODS "With Light and With Love" (Woodsist)

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Posted: Friday, April 25, 2014 5:00 am

The boys in the Brooklyn band Woods — particularly singer-guitarist Jeremy Earl — hustle like few others do. They release an album every year or so and tour like maniacs. Earl’s Woodsist label releases albums and singles at a swift clip. There’s too much organization for the band to be the ambling weirdos that they sound like on record, but they nonetheless stitch together a freak flag that capably emulates the shaggy aesthetic of hippie-rock. “Shepherd” opens With Light and With Love with a steel guitar that sounds much like Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, while “Full Moon” features guitar tones that recalls George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass. “With Light and With Love,” the record’s biggest song, initially sounds like early Pink Floyd before breaking into a jam that isn’t unlike that of the Rolling Stones’ epic “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking.” The songs are often better when you can’t place the influence; “Moving to the Left” is a fuzzy, stomping anthem and the best track here by a mile. Otherwise, all Woods albums are fundamentally similar; some noodle around more than others, but they’re all of the same quality, with a handful of terrific songs, a few forgettable ones, and Earl’s fragile voice occasionally wearing out its welcome. I’d be hard pressed to recommend any one over the others, yet it’s always nice when a new one comes around. 

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