Saturday, June 27, 2009

2001 : 12 "Revelator" by Gillian Welch

I have always had some interest in traditional folk songs and Americana, but have just been too damn lazy to do the necessary research to discover those lost gems. Thankfully, I have Gillian Welch to do the work and deliver me a similar feeling in maybe a prettier package. This, unfortunately, has not always been easy on Gillian, who often comes across as a woman lost in time trying to revive the past.

She addresses this problem (and the complaints of her critics) on her 3rd album with "Revelator." What seems at first like a love song—"Darling, remember, when you come to me"—is most likely a message to her listeners. Though warning us that she may be a fake and an imitator, she also shows that she has done her homework. After all, how many people know what a "katy" is or that there was an old folk song "John the Revelator?"

Despite all these apologies, the song is fucking gorgeous. Gillian's voice is like velvet, but perhaps the most beautiful thing about this song is the intricate and meticulous fingerpicking on the guitar. David Rawling and Gillian work together as a flawless pair and it is impossible to tell where one begins and the other ends.

(For further proof of how "Appalachian" Gillian really is, see the video:)

E. P. Johnson

Listen: Gillian Welch >> "Revelator"

1 comment:

Jessica said...

Hi Erica-
Just curious, how did you discover Gillian Welch?
Jessie Scofield