Folk music is a vague and variable term, a wide enough umbrella to cover everything from strident full band rock infused muscle to minimalist acoustic dream worlds and everything in between. Somewhere towards the latter end of that spectrum you find Lights and Bridges, a slice of solo acoustic delicacy with one foot in the traditional and the other in the contemporary. Tears of Gold is a gently picked and emotive ballad, reminiscent of the past masters such as Nick Drake but also forging a future for the genre in the same way as people like Bon Iver are.
But even with such a wide ranging label to apportion to this music, the term folk still doesn’t quite do the job, not because the label isn’t wide enough, but because it isn’t deep enough, for alongside those echoes of folk past and visions of folk to come the is an evocation of soul music and an accessibility of pop hidden behind the notes and in the breaths between the words. And that is what makes songs such as this stand out, not just because it is great folk music but because repeated plays reveal a depth and a poignancy that takes a while to absorb. And when you find it the song becomes much more than the sum of its musical parts.