catapult magazine

catapult magazine

Vol 10, Num 16 :: 2011.09.16 — 2011.09.29


Hidden treasure

On a recent lazy Friday night, our friend Stephanie texted from the theatre bar across the street from our apartment: “Y’all should come.  The music is nice!”  What we found in the warmly lit room was the perfect soundtrack for discovering hidden treasure in a small town on a late summer evening.

Composed of married musicians Kelci and Galen Smith, along with their pal Jamison Lyman, Kindlewood combines reflective poetry and delicate vocals with deft, playful instrumentation.  Aided by chimes, guitars, strings, harmonica, tambourine, djembe and a droning Indian instrument called a shruti box, their sound on their newest release Desiderium moves effortlessly between wilderness dreamscapes, haunted houses and familiar living rooms.  Their gentle, surprising melodies are tending to get stuck in my head, but in the way of good friends who could never overstay their welcome.

The album’s artwork, which features the pied piper leading a procession of children, is a fitting image for the story Kindlewood seeks to tell — a story in which there’s a fine line between playfulness and danger, between fairy tale and reality, between the comfortable and the strange. In their world, a life of grace is best lived simply and consciously, one day at a time and in the company of friends.  In their world, brokenness is real, but hope always gets the final word.

Traveling across the country in a vintage RV affectionately known as Doo Doo, Kindlewood has no grand plans to take over the world.  They only hope to share good music and make a living doing what they love, a modest hope that is radical in its own way.  In that spirit, their music offers a perfect accompaniment for ordinary moments — a morning cup of coffee, a moment of reflection, an evening with loved ones — illuminating the beauty and contentment of being fully human in this world.  If you feel afflicted with desiderium — a strong longing for something lost — you might just find a piece of what you’re looking for here.

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