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Three years ago I came across the independently released debut album from Montreal-based indie-folk trio Folly and the Hunter who had around 600 fans on Facebook at the time. Residents became one of my favourite albums to chill out to for a few months, hitting the right note for the full 45 minutes with its delightfully unassuming and simplistic style, upbeat yet slow melodies and whispered vocals. I gradually played the record less as is normal when you find new releases to become obsessed with and eventually it didn’t get played at all. Then in early 2013 the band announced the release of a second album and I was suddenly reminded of how good their debut was. It seems harsh to think about it but as hard as they had worked, Residents had hardly been noticed and was grossly under-appreciated.
I couldn’t wait for the new record especially after they posted teaser track online, and I was taken aback by the sound they had been working on. The track had kept the simplicity they had so wonderfully showcased on their first record but also built to quite a full sound by the end, helped somewhat by the outstanding percussion on the track. I realistically knew that I was in the vast minority when looking forward to the album as the small Canadian band was just that – small. Although their native North America had warmed to them, I seemed quite isolated as no European media outlet, be it radio, newspapers or even the internet-savvy bloggers who are usually good at picking up emerging artists, seemed to notice the trio. Album number two, Tragic Care, dropped in April and, as expected, continued with their beautiful low-fi contemporary folk style. Dreamy strings, a rich piano melody and the trademark effortless vocals. As promised, the song writing did indeed seem a little more grown up and sophisticated with a more exciting and warmer feel to the songs as the three friends seemed to fit perfectly together. Perhaps it was a virtue of already being familiar with the band’s work but their second offering just seemed like I already knew it.
The good news it that come 2014, Folly and the Hunter have finally find some momentum. Having already succeeded in America with a stunning performance at legendary festival SXSW, the band have started to stretch their legs and find a fanbase abroad. Last month saw them travel to Europe having been booked for Liverpool’s one day festival Sound City as well as headline dates in Denmark, Holland, Germany and Belgium. Here’s hoping there will be more UK gigs to come as Folly and the Hunter are a band you really need to know.