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Bahamas is the solo project of singer-songwriter Afie Jurvanen. He recently toured in the USA opening for Jack Johnson on his sold-out tour where he tested out tracks from his 4th studio album Earthtones, out 1/19/18. The album is a quirky yet haunting collection of songs that touch on success, parenting, facing depression, and everything else in his life. Most of all, it's an album about friendship, & how great it is to have someone in your life that can lift you up when you're feeling down.
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I have a very high quality stereo system that resolves every detail in the music. I'm always nervous buying LPs because my system exposes poor recording quality, which kills enjoyment of the music. For example... Gregory Porter albums have compressed sound quality and mediocre stereo imaging, which is a shame given how amazing his music is. There's never a guarantee that a modern 180 gram "audiophile quality" LP actually has audiophile sound.
Not so with Earthtones. Great sound quality, and great music. Very much audiophile quality. The mixing of different singers and instruments is solid, and it's easy to just close your eyes and get lost in the sonic soundscape. The only fault is that the stereo imaging is just slightly fuzzy, but maybe I can fix that by upgrading to a better cartridge. :)
For Earthtones, Afie Jurvanen decided to use legitimate Jazz and R&B musicians to add legitimacy and funk to a new sound, coupled with his normal female backup vocalist harmonizers.
If I had to be fair, I think Bahamas is Afie and barchords are still better albums on a whole, but this is just about right up there.
UPDATE: And it has! I'd like to make an amendment or two to my earlier review: I now give this album an wholehearted 5 stars. Long story short, I've watched a few interviews with Afie since, and this is truly who he is. In fact, this album probably offers the most of his authentic self than any previous. He's folky, sure. He's rock. He's all that he can do. But he's also got a lot of soul, and that is what genuinely shines on this album. Honesty + social awareness + truly great, full sound. I can't imagine anyone being disappointed with it, especially an avid Bahamas fan.