Easy-going, melodic Americana sounds started out my experience in listening to the latest singles from Marshfieldz; I chose to begin with “Windows” and found the resulting sounds to be an inviting & pleasant, gentle welcome into the music and style of Marshfieldz. Currently ranked #44 on the indie-charts in the fictional musical graveyard-to-be that is ReverbNation…aside from Marshfieldz being from Chicago, IL…there’s like, no information on this band out there yet – so I had to include something despite my spite towards RN and their empty-promises of false hope for aspiring, talented musicians…
Anyhow…what I can tell you is that Marshfieldz sound to me like a band that will find their way in this wide-open music business. A tight, well-produced sound played with flawless skill and mixed to perfection – “Windows” was a great introduction into the smooth Americana sound that the genre can offer. With perfectly blended harmonies…the song rocks along in a subtle, tender nature that matches the melody and sentiment behind the lyrics. Kind of like what Tom Petty sounds like when he really gets the harmonies with everyone just right; I’ll admit that’s not always that often…but you know the one I mean! Somewhere around the Wildflowers-ish time-frame…that kind of melodic, excellent Petty…that’s the one I’m referring to.
What I wasn’t expecting…was that the next track, “Amy,” would be a significant nod to Amy Winehouse, if not completely inspired by.
Now…what I can’t tell you about Marshfieldz…or really anyone else for that matter…is just what the heck we’re thinking when we write our music…and how when looking it one paper, knowing that the average musician might record between 40-100 songs in a career…HOW do you choose to spend any of those moments in a frivolous nature is always beyond me. But what’s frivolous or strange to me, could absolutely be of the utmost importance to someone else in terms of what they want or need to express – and of course the same works for anyone listening. I’ll fully admit that Winehouse never moved me quite to the point where I felt the need to write a song about her…but points to Marshlandz for sticking to what was important to them and putting this out there. The video is a complete homage to Amy with pictures of her throughout as the lyrics explain the history on Winehouse.
“Amy” has hooks and rhythm…it’s a little looser in the feel of it all, a little more rock. I like the melody…nearly heading into Springsteen’s territory from back in his heyday…maybe a little Van Halen in there too…this one’s a much tougher call for me. It does have strong hooks…but with a song written around a subject matter so specific – you always take a chance of potentially alienating an audience who might dig the hook but can connect to the meaning of the song, or might not even care to try if they weren’t interested in the subject beforehand. In this case of course it’s Winehouse…and for me, as the dominant theme throughout the song it was honestly a little tough to sink my teeth into…it’s accurate in its storytelling and detailed descriptions…but I never really connected with her, call me crazy.
As far as the Marshfieldz go I’m a pretty even split. I like a lot of what I hear on “Windows” and with “Amy” it was a bit of a toss-up. Seems like there’s strong musicianship and definitely potential to write even more versatile, big-hooks in the future – hopefully by then we’ll see that the Marshfieldz have put up some real info online and we’ll know they’re ready to take it all to the next level to come!
Find Marshfieldz at ReverbNation until you have the opportunity to find them anywhere else at: https://www.reverbnation.com/marshfieldz
Jer@SBS – http://sleepingbagstudios.ca/