11 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

On their third album, The Strumbellas’ huge folk-rock sound is rendered even huger. While their past LPs were rooted in a decidedly down-home aesthetic—like a bunch of old friends playing in a corner bar—Hope feels like a shot at the stars. On rustic-hued tunes such as “We Don’t Know” and “Spirits,” singer Simon Ward aches on lines like, “I’ll be a dreamer 'til the day I die/But they say, ‘Oh, how the good die young,'” before the six-piece band explodes in a gorgeous, chill-inducing chorus of piano, guitar, strings, claps, stomps, and fervent group singing. That’s the record’s strength again and again—compellingly written songs, expert arrangements, swelling emotion, and the beauty of many voices becoming one.

EDITORS’ NOTES

On their third album, The Strumbellas’ huge folk-rock sound is rendered even huger. While their past LPs were rooted in a decidedly down-home aesthetic—like a bunch of old friends playing in a corner bar—Hope feels like a shot at the stars. On rustic-hued tunes such as “We Don’t Know” and “Spirits,” singer Simon Ward aches on lines like, “I’ll be a dreamer 'til the day I die/But they say, ‘Oh, how the good die young,'” before the six-piece band explodes in a gorgeous, chill-inducing chorus of piano, guitar, strings, claps, stomps, and fervent group singing. That’s the record’s strength again and again—compellingly written songs, expert arrangements, swelling emotion, and the beauty of many voices becoming one.

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Customer Reviews

4 out of 5

172 Ratings

High Hopes so far

Jamesniggalord,

I really like Spirits I hope the rest of the album is just as good.

Second single even better

BrianSwaldi,

I was hesitant with the first single. I ended up buying it because it grew on me and I realized that it was a super catchy and good song. Shovels and Dirt is even better. It's much more Americana and less over-produced than Spirits. Totally digging it.
Oh and, to the comment from "thinkman," their band name is one of the better band names of the last 15-20 years. You don't know what you're talking about. Maybe you need to think more man.

About The Strumbellas

A Juno award-winning sextet from Toronto who generate a spirited blend of folk, pop, alt-country, and indie rock that they dub "folk popgrass," the Strumbellas were founded in 2008 by head songwriter, vocalist, and guitarist Simon Ward, keyboardist/vocalist David Ritter, lead guitarist Jon Hembrey, violinist Isabel Ritchie, bass player Darryl James, and drummer Jeremy Drury. Invoking names like the Lumineers and Mumford & Sons, the group issued their eponymous debut EP in 2009, followed by a series of high-profile shows and festival gigs. Their first full-length outing, 2013's My Father and the Hunter, landed a Juno nomination in the Roots & Traditional Album of the Year category, and their Six Shooter Records-issued sophomore long player, We Still Move on Dance Floors, earned a second nomination in the category, as well as their first win. Led by the Billboard Alternative Songs chart-topper "Spirits," their third LP, Hope, arrived in spring of 2016. ~ James Christopher Monger

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