CD All Alone in an Empty House  (CD 6910129),
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All Alone in an Empty House 
Lost in the Trees
1. All Alone In an Empty House
2. Walk Around the Lake
3. Mvt. I Sketch
4. Song For the Painter
5. Fire Place
6. Love On My Side
7. Wooden Walls of This Forest Church
8. Room Where Your Paintings Hang, A
9. We Burn the Leaves
10. Mvt. Ii Sketch
11. For Leah & Chloe
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 7098
Ari Picker; Scott Salter; Ryan Pickett
Personnel: Ari Picker (vocals, acoustic guitar, harpsichord, organ, bells); Joah Tunnell (vocals, electric guitar); Emma Nadeau (vocals, accordion, horns, piano, percussion); Katie Wyatt (violin, viola); Corynn Loebs, Callie Jamar, Lauren Paynter (violin); Neel-Gopal Sharma (viola); Leah Gibson, Andrew Anagnostopoulos (cello); Mark Daumen (tuba, percussion); Ken Carle (horns); Will Gibbons (piano); Scott Carle (drums); Jonny Tunnell, Wendy Allen, Will Hackney (background vocals).
Audio Mixers: Dan Schreier; Scott Salter.
Photographers: Karen Shelton; Ron Picker.
Arranger: Ari Picker.
In a different era of indie music, it might have proven more difficult for the folk/classical/pop fusion of Lost in the Trees to make an impact, but in an artistic climate softened by the likes of Final Fantasy, Sufjan Stevens, St. Vincent, etc., the North Carolina ensemble was able to give All Alone in an Empty House a second life. Originally released on the tiny Trekky label in 2008 at an EP-ish length, All Alone was picked up by Anti Records and given a 2010 birthday with a couple of extra tracks to boot. Originally Ari Picker's one-man home recording project, Lost in the Trees have blossomed into a full-blown band, and a big one at that, busting at the seams with string players who lend the music a classical flavor. Of course, that classical element begins with Picker's compositions themselves -- he's a classically trained composer who had debuted his own symphony before the release of All Alone, and his writing reflects that experience. But while he's adept at weaving sweeping string sections into gentle art folk compositions in a manner that might very well find support among Joanna Newsom admirers, Picker doesn't seem at all averse to segregating the overt classical and folk-pop pieces. As you might intuit from their rather utilitarian titles, "Mvt. 1 Sketch" and "Mvt. 2 Sketch" are fully realized orchestral instrumental compositions, and each one happens to be followed by the most unadorned, acoustic guitar-driven moments on the album ("Song for the Painter" and "For Leah and Chloe," respectively). Picker's high warbling vocals are equally applicable to gentle elegant melodic arcs and the album's more angst-ridden moments like the rockish, electric guitar-centered "Fireplace," but it's as a composer -- one with a healthy disregard of musical boundaries -- that he truly excels. ~ J. Allen
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Anti (USA) 270982
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