Last updated on December 10, 2021
The Italian folk scene continues to blossom out of the horror of 2020. Frozen Farmer’s third release Things to Share via Piesse Groove Records paints sonic soundscapes with these twelve songs.
Tracking at New Art Studio in Saronno, Lombardia, Italy, and mixing in Verbania by Pierpaolo D’Emilio at GrooveIt Studio creates an incredible aura to the music. Frozen Farmer’s style, a classic folk vibe infused with Italian flair, shines. “The Lights” feels like the perfect opener, starkly revealing the band’s eclectic instrumentation in haunting beauty.
Francesco Scalise’s banjo refines the gypsy-like sensory experience that the five-piece group creates. Sweet and lonely, “For Someone” rests in the ambiance of Sabino Rizzuto’s guitar. Creating an almost Beatles-like connection with Mattia Rizzato’s wurlitzer, the contributions from bassist Valter Violini are magic. Giordano Rizzato on drums immerses audiences in an otherworldly experience.
The heart of the record rests in the songs “Crossing” and “Young Man,” which integrate banjo into soaring bass lines. Yet “Run” is the standout track of the record: frantic, hopeful, and haunting, this song glitters with rich instrumentation. “John Lee” is reminiscent of the greats in banjo-driven folk music, fitting in nicely with Bela Fleck and Tony Trischka.
Frozen Farmer closes out their record with a brilliant trio of tracks. “Another Dream” shifts the album’s narrative. Beautifully authentic, the nuanced vocals soar. The masterfully restrained instrumentation captures isolation and longing. “Morning” sets the stage for “A New Love,” with its complete transition to what seems like a funeral march. Letting the banjo reveal the melody allows each banjo note to lighten the song’s somber mood. Frozen Farmer’s Things to Share soars as one of this summer’s new folk discoveries.–Lisa Whealy