Back in 2011, Ben Howard released his album Every Kingdom, which became an essential album to the indie-folk crowd. The album was intimate and uplifting and drew comparisons to Bon Iver’s debut, For Emma. Songs like “Old Pine,” “Only Love,” and “Keep Your Head Up” manage to be both grounded and transcendent.
Howard returns with his second album, I Forget Where We Were. This time around, he’s decidedly more experimental and melancholic. As always, he is in expert in his craft, constructing melodic, richly layered, and intimate songs in his usual tradition. Where Every Kingdom was optimistic and hopeful, I Forget Where We Were is cathartic and introspective. The highlight of the album, the eight-minute long “End of the Affair,” begins with simple reflection and culminates to a raging, wild exclamation. Other high points include “Small Things,” “Conrad,” and “I Forget Where We Were.”
Ben Howard’s album is available for streaming on iTunes and listening on iTunes. Though not ideal for a night out, his latest mood album is ideal for those thought-filled Fall walks to class.
– Jenny Henderson