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Infinite Arms
Band of Horses Infinite Arms
Released 18 May 2010

Band of Horses
Phil Ek
Label Columbia
Length 45:17
Genre Indie rock
Website www.bandofhorses.com

If you haven’t heard of Band of Horses, don’t worry you’re in the majority. In truth they have managed only a modest success in America, their highest charting single 'Is There a Ghost' reached the heady heights of number 34 on the Billboard Modern Rock Chart. They haven’t fared much better this side of the Atlantic either, with their first two releases going unnoticed to the general public. A successful spot on Later... with Jools Holland in April finally generated enough sales for both albums to break into the Top 200 in the UK charts. The band has had a turbulent time in these formative years leading to numerous line-up changes. This has not dampened the enthusiasm of Ben Bridwell, chief songwriter and only ever-present member of the band, who has pulled out all the stops to create one of the surprises of 2010.

Infinite Arms is bursting with songs that bands like America or Creedence Clearwater Revival would be proud of -not exactly cutting edge but this doesn’t take away from the enjoyment. While it does stay firmly in its Americana roots, the full range of the genre is portrayed here. Opening track 'Factory' is a truly breathtaking introduction to the album, loaded with sweeping string sections and heartfelt vocals. This is contrasted later on with 'Evening Kitchen', a song that is stripped down to the bare bones– two voices and a guitar. Lead single 'Compliments' and 'NW Apt.' provide the more up tempo moments on the album, both full of the fun and energy of 1970’s West Coast country rock. All of this combines to create a listening experience that is at times uplifting, haunting and truly beautiful.

Infinite Arms should help propel Band of Horses into the public consciousness, after they finish supporting Pearl Jam in the States there’s a tour of Ireland and the UK followed up with spots at various festivals in Australia and mainland Europe. This is the crucial period where they can shake off the tag of nearly men and gain the respect and following that, on the strength of this album, they really do deserve.

- Brian Kinsella