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Hello, Dear Wind

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Album Review

All the reasons why you fell in love with Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea are the same reasons why you should check out Hello, Dear Wind, the second offering from Baltimore's Page France. Singer/songwriter Michael Nau fronts the merrymaking collective with his boyish sweetness and spotless vocal delivery, and that alone will make your indie rock heart swoon ten times over. Nau does not pretend to be another worldly poetic troubadour wise beyond his years; everyone already knows that such a title belongs solely to Conor Oberst. Nau's music speaks for itself, and fans of the Decemberists' Colin Meloy and Richard Edwards of Margot & the Nuclear So and So's should quickly warm up to this storybook of carefully mended broken hearts and dreams of future travels. From the blushing hints of optimism of "Chariot" and "Junkyard" to chamber pop oddities such as "Elephant" and "Cindy," Hello, Dear Wind is a pure delight. Its overall presentation is absolutely majestic with its sweeping acoustic guitars and bright harmonies — vocalist Whitney McGraw's girlish nature is a perfect match to Nau's bashful disposition on the childlike "Finders." Page France write simple songs for the daydreamer in everyone. Hello, Dear Wind will be your voice of love and luck, if you let it.

Customer Reviews

Don't spoil for me my mystery...

I found out about Page France not too long ago, and Hello, Dear Wind is my favorite album from them thus far. It's far from a perfect album, but it's still better than the stuff on the radio at the moment. It is a shame that they broke up.
Page France is recommended for you if you like acoustic guitars at the fore, but with folk influences and an awesome glockenspiel.

A lot of these things may be nit-picky, but I think that there are some things that they could have ironed out. For example, a (petty grievance) is the one-word songs, it kind of over simplifies the album. Next are the lyrical overlaps, such as "happy endings" or "hearts of gold". Again, petty stuff. They could have stood to make some of their songs a bit more complex. Some of the allusions and metaphors could have had more depth too.

Now to the stuff that I really liked. The lead singer, Michael Nau, may have a slight drone, but there is a tinge of innocence to his voice and fits the persona of Page France perfectly. The glockenspiel adds melody to the song and fills the sound. The acoustic guitar plays wonderful chords and rhythms. They have a pure sound, and it's very refreshing. They don't really have choruses, put they like to repeat a line or verse towards the end of a song, which adds more power and meaning to the song. Overall, the simplicity of the songs shadow the album's small flaws, and it will be on my repeat playlist for a while.

Recommended Tracks: Chariot, Jesus, Dogs, Junkyard, Glue, Feather.


Formed: 2004 in Baltimore, MD

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Baltimore's Page France feature Michael Nau (vocals, guitar, keyboards), Whitney McGraw (glockenspiel, keyboards, vocals), Clinton Jones (drums), and Jasen Reeder (bass). The indie rock quartet formed in 2004 and issued its debut album, Come, I'm a Lion, a year later. Indie rock fans were wowed by Nau's earnestness, and the press compared to him to the likes of Jeff Tweedy and Bright Eyes' Conor Oberst. Page France's sophomore effort, Hello, Dear Wind, arrived in fall 2005; it...
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