The easy way to talk about Holler, Wild Rose, would be to simply list the influences that are at times inescapable. John Moloskie’s wide ranging vocals invite instant comparisons to Thom Yorke, or even Jeff Buckley. Musically, they’ll have you thinking back to early recordings by Radiohead, The Verve, or even The Shins at times. Granted, that’s a lot of life changing artists in one paragraph, especially for a young band out of Jersey who just released their debut record, Our Little Hymnal. Yet, all these comparisons are valid, and most surprising, is the fact that Holler, Wild Rose are able to take on such familiar sources and not come off as a band cobbled together to fulfill a wish list of recommendations.

Holler, Wild Rose are able to overcome this daunting list of references through ambition, confidence, and skill. Our Little Hymnal stretches close to 70 minutes, and at its center is the nearly 12 minute “Poor in Spirit.” For seven minutes, chords are strummed slowly on the guitar and every moment from their birth as a down stroke to their gradual dissipation is wholly audible. Similarly, every note struck on the piano, and every syllable sung by Moloskie is given ample room to live and breathe. Even without the second movement and its soaring crescendo, these simple pleasures would have been satisfying in their own right.

“Marylawn Hair” offers an entirely different listening experience. Again, Moloskie’s vocals are an obvious draw, but in place of the slow, careful, and patient approach exhibited on “Poor In Spirit,” Holler, Wild Rose deliver a thick, colorful, soundscape with bright, twinkling guitar tones set against ambient swirls. While “Sun Vines” may be the most approachable track on Our, Little Hymnal. The liberal usage of reverb and echo effects lends it the same endearing quality as the songs from The Shins debut, Oh, Inverted World. You can consider it your gateway to the bountiful pleasures waiting within Our Little Hymnal.

MP3:Holler, Wild Rose! – Sun Vines
MP3:Holler, Wild Rose! – Marylawn Hair

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