Grammy-nominated Americana trio The Wood Brothers explore the beauty of reverie and going back to reality in “The One I Love,”released on Jan. 10. The song is the fourth single from their upcoming album, ‘Kingdom in My Mind,’ coming out Jan. 24 on Honey Jar/Thirty Tigers.
Brothers Chris and Oliver Wood had their own, separate musical careers for 15 years until they performed together one night, and realized they should be playing on the same stage. Joining forces proved to be the best move, as they have been making well-crafted and critically acclaimed music together for almost another 15 years.
The prestigious Blue Note released their debut “Ways Not To Lose” in 2006, followed by “Loaded” in 2008. After relocating to Nashville, The Wood Brothers released “Paradise” in 2015, which included now-permanent member, multi-instrumentalist Jano Rix. The band’s success grew with each release. Their sixth album, “One Drop of Truth” (2018) received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Americana Album, and hit No. 1 on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart.
Sonically, “The One I Love” has a wide spectrum, which can be attributed to the brothers’ rich musical background: while Oliver (acoustic and electric guitars) had gospel, blues, R&B, funk and country influences in the first half of his career; Chris (upright bass) studied jazz at the New England Conservatory of Music. “The One I Love” tastefully combines their talent and musical expertise in a soulful way. The country-folk vocal harmonies are very strong and give the song a nice drive.
While the verses delve into the innocent sweetness of daydreaming about a “good temptress,” the choruses come alive with the satisfaction and comfort of coming home to “the one I love.”
The change in the object of attention is felt very effectively in the music, transporting us vividly from one scene to the next, almost forcing us to agree with the lyrical conclusion that what’s home is better than the seemingly greener grass next door. A fun twist at the end: the roles being reversed, with the “one I love” being the one going out dancing and coming back home. This addition of fairness and equality with the woman in the relationship is reflected outside of the song as well. The band has teamed up with charity Thistle Farms, which helps women who have been victims of sex trafficking, prostitution, and/or addiction to get off the street and into safe housing where they can participate in therapy and job training.
The lyrics also fit comfortably with the rest of the album, which promises to be a hymn to self-examination and acceptance. “Kingdom in My Mind” is about that inner world that we all have; that place outside of reality, filled with fantasies and our deeper thoughts. The Wood Brothers allows us to travel there, while contemplating finding contentment in a confusing world.
The song’s thought-out structure almost comes as a surprise when you find out that every track on the album came from jam sessions. The band was trying out its new recording studio/rehearsing space, and naturally began recording without even realizing it. The musicians subsequently organized the extended instrumental improvisations, turned them into songs with clear sections, and wrote lyrics both separately and together. This process clearly gave ‘The One I Love’ its organic feel, while still sounding like a finished, well sewn-up piece — a feat that can only be attained by expert players who know each other musically very well.
— Moana Avvenenti
“Kingdom In My Mind” is available on LP, CD & Digital Formats for pre-order here LINK.
In support of the new album, the The Wood Brothers are going on the road for a North American tour, starting Jan 29 at the Ram’s Head Live in Baltimore.
1/29 – Baltimore, MD – Ram’s Head Live ^
1/30 – New York, NY – Webster Hall ^
1/31 – New York, NY – Webster Hall ^
2/1 – Philadelphia, PA – The Fillmore ^
2/3 – Toronto, Canada – Mod Club Theatre ^
2/5 – Rochester, NY – Kodak Center ^
2/6 – Burlington, VT – Flynn Center for the Performing Arts ^
2/7 – New Haven, CT – College Street Music Hall ^
2/8 – Albany, NY – Palace Theatre ^
2/9 – State College, PA – The State Theatre ^
2/11 – McKees Rocks, PA – Roxian Theatre ^
2/12 – Richmond, VA – The National ^
2/13 – Chattanooga, TN – Walker Theatre ^
2/14 – Nashville, TN – The Ryman ^
2/27 – 3/1 – Punta Cana, DR – Avett Brothers at the Beach (Sold Out)
3/4 – Phoenix, AZ – The Crescent Ballroom *
3/5 – Los Angeles, CA – The Regent *
3/6 – Santa Barbara, CA – Campbell Hall *
3/7 – Oakland, CA – Fox Theater *
3/8 – Eureka, CA – Arkley Center for the Performing Arts *
3/10 – Eugene, OR – McDonald Theater *
3/11 – Kirkland, WA – Kirkland Performance Center *
3/12 – Portland, OR – Crystal Ballroom *
3/13 – Vancouver, BC – Imperial *
4/2 – Knoxville, TN – Bijou Theatre
4/3 – Knoxville, TN – Bijou Theatre
4/4 – Chicago, IL – Riviera Theatre
4/5 – Milwaukee, WI – Pabst Theatre
4/7 – Detroit, MI – Majestic Theatre
4/8 – Columbus, OH – Southern Theatre
4/9 – Asheville, NC – The Orange Peel
4/10 – Asheville, NC – The Orange Peel
4/11 – Asheville, NC – The Orange Peel
5/22 – Chillicothe, IL – Summer Camp Music Festival
6/27 – Laytonville, CA – Black Oak Ranch
^ w/ Kat Wright
* w/ Birds of Chicago