With recording locations across America being used for Kurt Vile’s sixth studio album, this method of production has without doubt helped shape the records’ identity.
B’lieve I’m Goin Down…tells tales of acceptance and awareness while hinting at a vulnerable and exposed side to the Philadelphian musician. This profound authenticity is dotted throughout the album. Tracks such as ‘That's Life, tho (almost hate to say)’ and ‘Wheelhouse’ take a straightforward approach lyrically and an alluring weightlessness musically.
Tender and considerate, Vile floats through his slower songs with a certain laziness. Layers of acoustic guitar and banjos bring these tracks to full strength and the consideration of any more idle development is very much embraced.
But not all of the record takes an unhurried stance. ‘Pretty Pimpin’ is a chug style eventuality with a catchy melody fit for indie-folk popularity. Peculiar and highly compelling, throughout, Vile finds ways of using these captivating melodies with his unpredicted lyrics as bait. Acting as the hook on the end of the line is his musical ability. From performing guitar, and lap-steel to piano and horns on the album, he manages to use both of these qualities to catch the listener.
There are so many aspects of the record that make B’lieve I’m Goin Down…a tremendous release. Vile has found a great balance of not only the topics covered, but the genres and tempos within have been just as brilliantly matched. Immaturity and maturity, difficulties and happiness, sexiness and insecurities, indie and folk, country and rock. Its all there.
Vile has succeeded in finding a wonderful jumbled sound that has been beautifully carried out. The guitars are deep and crisp and the vocals purposely lethargic. The 35 year old presents an honest and outgoing collection of tracks that are truly of the highest quality. The outcome here is clear, logical and coherent, brilliant.