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iTunes Review

Holy Folk is the work of four Los Angeles–based songwriters: Keith Waggoner, Josh Caldwell, Ryan George, and Jonathan Hylander. They've worked separately in various groups on the local club scene, playing various styles. This debut album, 2013's Motioning, follows the 2011 EP Heavy Hands, which had Waggoner and Caldwell only. Though Holy Folk isn't a "folk" band in the strict sense, Motioning often uses acoustic instruments to bring the group's singer/songwriter–ish indie rock to life. Surely songs such as "How Many Ways," "Jump the Rails," and the truly stunning "Hazards of the Sea" have their roots in solitary acoustic readings. Yet with a capable group of musicians, the arrangements are elevated with harmonies, gentle orchestration, and whatever instrumentation works to the songs' advantages. "Time Lapse" comes to life with handclaps, falsetto vocals, and a looping keyboard line in the distance. "A Place We Couldn't Stay" evokes The Beach Boys with its eclectic instrumentation and gorgeous backing harmonies.

Motioning, Holy Folk
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