Make no mistake when listening to Andrew Reed on his new solo album If All the World Were Right: he leans heavily towards folk, even pop folk. There is a sort of cusping edge of indie here, however, especially in Reed’s guitar and vocals. This sliver of indie is worth examining because said sliver is not your garden variety indie folk. The album and, indeed, its newest single and video “Carolina in the Morning” is about as far from Mumford and Sons and the latest rash of indie folk as one can get while still being indie folk.
Taking the current single as example, “Carolina In the Morning” is a folk ballad with a heavy Americana streak, yet there is nary a banjo or mandolin in sight. This in itself should be refreshing for indie folk fans.The vein Andrew Reed operates is more on the side of early rock folk, like Bob Dylan, Springsteen or Mellencamp. In the guitar on “Carolina In the Morning” Mellencamp is definitely recognizable, while on the album’s title track there’s more of an E Street band flavor.
The video for “Carolina In the Morning” is simple and evocative and clearly meant to go with the music and vocals. By the end the audience is still not sure if Reed is talking about a woman or an actual Carolina. It doesn’t matter, as either way the song conjures up images of the south and its lush environs. It’s a soothing folk rock melody that is brought to life with Reed’s more-hippie-than-usual visage in these gorgeous scenes. It’s a bit of a departure from the other work on the album, which has more of a blues rock vibe, but it’s a nice pause in that vibe and a good choice for a second single.
With teasers on his YoutTube channels of other tracks on If All the World Were Right, it seems Reed might make a few more videos off this album. In the meantime, indie folk fans can enjoy this non-Mumford album which, while unique to Reed, is a return to form for indie rock in general and hopefully a trend that continues for those fans who are a bit burned out on banjos and waxed mustaches.