Grandpa Was a Lion – Hello from the Farm

I normally am very wary of “low-fi” as a genre. The expense in creating quality recording is dropping faster every day and it’s made “low-fi” something of an aesthetic choice instead of a sound borne of necessity. Grandpa Was a Lion, aka Justin D’Onofrio, fits pretty firmly in this ‘genre.’ “Hello From the Farm” especially. Recorded on a second-hand iBook in a basement, it naturally sounds pretty rough around the edges.

Thankfully, instead of using poor-quality sound to hide imperfections, the “low-fi-iness” serves to augment D’Onofrio’s sweet, lilting voice by imbuing it with a ghostly, yearning quality. Repetitive guitar strums become hypnotic under the song’s slight fizz. A haunting organ–or is it a harmonica?–let’s itself go. “Hello From the Farm” is by no means a complex song, but it has a lovely melody and wonderful atmospherics. “Low-fi” may or may not have been an aesthetic choice here, I can’t make that call, but it works wonderfully for the song.

His album, called The Whalestoe Tapes, is up on Bandcamp for purchase or for free. It has a track entitled “January Jones (This Bird has Flown)” which hopefully is reason enough alone to make you want to check it out. Oh, and it’s a great album.

Hello From the Farm

mp3: {Hello From the Farm} (rightclick>saveas…)


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