by tom johnson
One of 2015’s most exquisite, bewitching releases, Rey Villalobos crafted eerie, captivating magic on his ‘Daughter of the Sea‘ LP, and he returns at the very end of this month with a brand new collection of songs under his House Of Wolves moniker, this time recorded in Portland, Oregon, rather than the dark Irish coast that had such an impact on his songwriting last time around.
We’ll have to wait for the full record to judge the impact that such transportation has had, but if new track “Firefly” is anything to go by, it’s a somewhat substantial one. Premiering below from today, the new track might be Villalobos’ most endearing pop song to-date; drifting beautifully through the ether on an often bright, piano-led concoction, the track feels oak-aged and antiquated but also sturdy rather than submerged, forceful rather than acutely delicate. The vocal tones too are strikingly wholesome, and while they’re still demonstrably tender they never project a sense of breakage, rather they come across splendidly earthy and meaningful, propelled forward by the desire to tell the story at their core.
All in all, “Firefly” is a poignant, magical addition to Villalobos’ catalogue, and it also acts as a invigorating introduction to whatever the attached LP might hold. Listen below; the full record arrives on September 30th.