Few students at Harding devote their time and talents to creating original music albums, but the up and coming group Four West has released its own CD, full of personally written lyrics and music. With nine tracks, the album has a Nickel Creek feel full of southern comfort and lyrics that speak of life and love.
Juniors Austin Lowery, Adam Dell, Mariah Swisher and senior Sam Morris worked to create their first album full of their originally written lyrics and music compositions. The songs reveal stories of home in the heartland of the South and being in and out of love. Each is accompanied with pure vocals and instruments that tell stories through incredible harmony and dynamics.
Instruments that accompany the vocals include harmonica, fiddle, bass, banjo, mandolin, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, shaker, tambourine and piano. The musical combination of each of these helps to produce a unique and gorgeous sound that has elements of southern rock, country and bluegrass.
Listening to each song takes me back to a time or place in my memory that I could relate to and attribute to my southern roots. “Strawberry River” is the first track and my personal favorite on the CD, with harmonies that are easy to listen to and learn every note. “Roam” is an especially touching composition at this time in life, where the road that we may be traveling is uncertain, but wherever we end up, we always know that in our family, friends and homes is where are loyalty lies. Whether it’s a broken heart or a deep connection to community, Four West evokes emotion and passion through each individual piece.
Each member of the group contributed their own written songs which reflects the talents and character of the individuals within the band. The voice of each band member is beautiful and distinct and the blending of the four creates gorgeous harmony. The solo songs are strong, sentimental and expressive of the experiences that listeners have also had firsthand.
I love this album, and I greatly support the group itself. The members are beyond talented, dedicated and creative. Their album is a true reflection of hard work and musical magic as well as sweet southern simplicity. The Four West CD is constantly in my car and the songs replay in my head. Each track is recognizable, enjoyable and memorable. I appreciate these talented musicians and their impressive accomplishment of an excellent first album, and I am hopeful for more to come.
If you want to buy a copy of the CD, contact the band on their Facebook page. A dollar of the proceeds go to KIBO.