Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Ken's Best Albums of 2013: #8: Tristen - Caves

I'll admit it: I didn't really like Tristen's Caves when it was first released. I discovered Tristen opening up for Justin Townes Earle last year and was completely blown away. I even wrote about her in a hysterical, blubbering way for my previous blog. Her previous album, Charlatans At the Garden Gate was more of alt-pop country. It had all the hooks and catchy songs of pop country, but you'd never confuse her with Taylor Swift.

Then Caves came out. Tristen dropped almost all of the twang and replaced it with synthesizers. Upbeat, synth laden pop just isn't my thing and I was quick to dismiss the entire album. A couple days later I went back just to listen to "No One's Gonna Know," the album's lead track. I kept surprising myself with how much I liked, and then loved that one song. And then I kept going back, listening to more and more of the album. I started to realize that the songs I dismissed as kiddie stuff on first listen were actually Tristen's most mature work yet. Hidden within all the polish and keyboards were the same country folk murder ballads I loved about Tristen. Sometimes being a music snob comes back to bite me in the ass.

Make sure to head over to Tristen's website for more information and tour dates. You can stream the entire album Caves below.

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