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Andrew Bird

Hands Of Glory

Release Date: October 30, 2012
Label: Mom & Pop Records
Reviewed By: Jill Stephenson

I have seen Andrew Bird perform 4 times live and I never miss an album, needless to say, the man has my heart. However, this also means I expect quite a lot from Mr. Bird. Hands Of Glory is his most recent album that features 8 tracks called “The musical companion to Break It Yourself.” Break It Yourself came out just six months ago. The overall vibe of the album has a much more bluegrass feel to it than his earlier albums including some talented fiddle work from the multi-instrumentalist Andrew Bird. All recorded in single-mic fashion in a barn with a full band, the album begins with “Three White Horses,” a stunning track with Bird’s beautiful and haunting vocals, “You know you’ll be needing somebody when you come die.” Next up is cover of the Handsome Family’s “When That Helicopter Comes” that is heavy with reverb and laced with delicate violin. The album features another cover, Etta Baker’s “Railroad Bill,” the most bluegrass influenced track of the record, done in such flawless fashion I’m sure Ms. Baker would have to agree. “If I Needed You” is the heartbreaker of the album, with simple plucking and crooning, harmonizing vocals the track sounds like an old country classic. The track “Orpheo” is a recall to “Orpheo Looks Back” off of Break It Yourself. The album closes with a reprise of “Three White Horse” called “Beyond That Valley of The Three White Horses” which is around nine minutes long and full of impressive musicality. The whole record has an old country vibe that remains slightly rooted in the present time, yet another success for Andrew Bird. Apparently, the man can do no wrong. Bird is currently on tour in Europe.