Between the Trees – 2005-2010
RIYL – Mae, Copeland, The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus
In 2009, we saw a great change in a band’s sound that for some went by unnoticed. When it comes to love songs, bands and artists often draw from the same inspiration which is loss. The songs are sad, depressing, and infecting. Now while some of these songs may be exceptional and memorable; I myself am a huge sucker for sad songs – Between the Trees did something different for their second and ultimately final album.
The songs on the album are active love songs. They’re sung from a point of view of a current relationship, or someone pursuing a relationship. It’s refreshing to hear songs not sung from the same depressing perspective. And although there are one or two songs on the album that reflect the sadder aspect of love, the majority are about actively being in love with someone.
Another point worth noting is the outlook that vocalist Ryan Kirkland gives in his lyric writing. Love songs are difficult to write because there’s only so many ways you can write out “I love you” without being incessantly repetitive. So when writing these songs, Kirkland gives such a new perspective that it’s personable to you. Each song on the album “Spain” paints a scene just vague enough that the listener fills in the colors with themselves and their own loved ones. Perspective is the most important part of the album, because it makes the listener feel like to a certain degree, that they’ve helped create this song because of story their mind is making up in their head as they hear the words, “Keep my distance, you say, while holding my hand, I love it when your this close to me. Because you speak so intently. As you say, ‘come kiss me.'” To the listener, they not only feel like the song was written for them, but that in some way, they wrote the words themselves.
After releasing this second album that went by way too unnoticed, the band toured for just over a year before announcing that in December of 2010, they would play 2 final shows. After the disbanding of the band, Kirkland went on to begin a fund to record a solo record. There are little details of whatever became of that effort which speaks volumes of the band themselves – disappearing completely.
Don’t take the lack of attention here to the first album “The Story and the Song” as a slight. Their debut album was an emotional and fun album, however the reason the band has made this list of bands we wish were still around is the lyrics and songwriting showcased from the all together too quiet “Spain.”
Check out their music, try to sing along with Kirkland’s soaring voice without making your voice crack, and never forget music that makes us feel.