NPR logo Review: Mothers, 'When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired'

Review: Mothers, 'When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired'

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When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired

When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired Courtesy of the artist hide caption

toggle caption Courtesy of the artist

There's a pervasive sadness to Mothers' songs that's strangely disturbing: When Kristine Leschper sings, "We lived unloved in unmade beds / You wore me like a necklace," it's hard not to want to reach out and lend her hope. When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired is filled with straightforward observations about frailty, broken trust and insecurity. The songs feel like the sole expression of the artist at their core, made with the support of friends like guitarist Drew Kirby, as well as Matthew Anderegg on guitar, keyboards and percussion.

As a musician in Athens, Ga., Leschper has also found kindred spirits in neighboring bands: Deerhunter's Josh McKay plays vibraphone, while Grand Vapids' McKendrick Bearden supports these songs with lovely string arrangements. Another familiar name, producer Drew Vandenberg, has worked with Of Montreal and Kishi Bashi; his stark contribution seems to accompany a deep understanding of the songs. Everything on When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired feels essential, with nothing overplayed; the drama is simply stated.

It all might sound incredibly depressing, except that what art does best is serve as a means of growth. When You Walk A Long Distance You Are Tired sounds like the work of an artist who's seeking out an understanding of herself and the world around her. There's a deep underpinning of melancholy and sorrow here, but to watch these songs performed live is to witness a band that's growing into something fuller and more intense every day. These songs feel like a snapshot of a time getting left behind rather than lived in, performed by a riveting, honest band.

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