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Hello I Feel the Same

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Album Review

While some fans still pine for the full-bodied folk-rock sound of the band's early-'90s major-label era, the Innocence Mission have essentially been an acoustic folk act since the release of 1999's Birds of My Neighborhood. The comforting, hushed style they presented on that record has remained largely unchanged over the years and the bulk of their output since then reflects the quiet, intimate world of husband-and-wife team Don and Karen Peris. After a five-year break, the Innocence Mission pick up right where they left off on Hello I Feel the Same, the Pennsylvania group's 11th studio LP. Even if their stylistic evolution has somewhat plateaued, their songs remain as sharp as ever, with Karen's poetic slice-of-life snapshots revealing a warm inner world of family, friends, and the inevitable passage of time. This tender-voiced introspection has been her bailiwick since the beginning and her mastery of wistful melancholia and living on the vague edges of seasons is unparalleled. Those without a sentimental bone in their body will likely be unable to connect with the band's hazy nostalgia, but more sensitive listeners will find themselves transported to a world of eternal autumn by lovely tracks like "Washington Field Trip" and "State Park." With its pastoral guitar soundscapes, eerie bass harmonica, and surprisingly massive drum part, "Tom on the Boulevard" is an album standout that bridges the gap between the group's pop and folk tendencies. The charming "Fred Rogers," an account of a dream in which Karen road trips to meet the beloved television host, feels like a natural extension of the Innocence Mission's personality as they once again welcome listeners into their own neighborhood.

Customer Reviews

Better after a few more spins..

It was easy to dismiss this as more as the same but there are some hidden gems to be found here. I jumped the gun with my initial review but i’ve come back to revise it. Yes, not their best, but better than the last couple of (dull) outings.

One of their absolute best albums

Couldn’t possibly disagree more with Evan7’s review. Hello I Feel the Same is one of the band’s top efforts, and certainly their best, most satisfying work since Glow and Birds of My Neighborhood. It’s a quieter album, but no less powerful or compelling than any of their earlier, full-band works, as every track here is deeply affecting and hauntingly memorable in its own way. Songs like “Daily” and “Washington Field Trip” will stay in your head for days, while others such as “Blue and Yellow” are as catchy and melodic as anything the band has ever done. If you don’t like this album, maybe it’s time to admit that you just don’t like the Innocence Mission and move on. If you do like this band, however, you’ll absolutely love this album.

Beautiful

Absolutely stunning and beautiful at every level. The music, lyrics, arrangements, are uplifting, thoughtful and perfectly executed. This timeless music gets better with each listening! Fantastic as are the other albums by this amazingly talented trio.

Biography

Formed: 1982 in Lancaster, PA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Centered around the husband-and-wife songwriting team of Don Peris (vocals, guitar) and Karen Peris (vocals, guitar, piano), Lancaster, Pennsylvania natives the Innocence Mission crafted a tasteful, politically correct brand of collegiate folk-pop similar to Sarah McLachlan or 10,000 Maniacs (in fact, the Perises appeared on Natalie Merchant's 1998 album Ophelia). With a rhythm section composed of bassist Mike Bitts and drummer Steve Brown, the Innocence Mission released their eponymous debut album...
Full Bio
Hello I Feel the Same, The Innocence Mission
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