Album Review: Dark Corners by It's Just Craig
Dark Corners is a lovely conceptual album as well as latest release from Indianapolis and Nashville based artist, It’s Just Craig. Though the name of the band may imply that one person created the work, it’s actually the product of a collective (consisting of 6 people) that has previously collaborated on a different album. Dark Corners was released on June 30th, 2017, and has received widespread positive reviews.
Melodic, reflective, and beautifully executed, the 10-track album features numerous duets over harmonies that are created using acoustic instruments, electronic components, or a fusion of both. Though tracks 1-8 follow a cohesive narrative of a linear story, the 10th track (the 9th one serves as a pause) is a standalone song that’s independent of the rest of Dark Corners. The music ranges form Americana to Glitchy Indie Rock, with occasional country influences shinning through.
According to Craig:
“This album is the story of a cargo boat captain and his journey. From the moment he leaves home, both excited & full of reservations, on a sometimes lonely path, getting stranded within view of his destination port, fighting temptations of the sea, struggling with being out of touch with his partner on land, & ultimately deciding whatever it was he was deciding, only to learn that the decision may no longer be his to make.”
Dark Corners was recorded in Oakland, California, and features Craig (vocals and guitar), Marc Ford (lead guitar), Elijah Ford (bass, piano, acoustic and electric guitars), Jason Slota (drums), Rob Shelton (synths), as well as Jess and Kels Von Strantz (vox and cello). It was produced by John Vanderslice and mastered by Bernie Grundman, both of whom are heavyweights in the music industry having worked with Prince, St. Vincent, and many other popular artists.
The goal for the collective was to create a work that felt organic, real, and approachable, which is why the album features live tracking, minimal overdubs, and is 100% analogue. On tracks like “Go,” “Alone,” “Captain,” “Rain Never Came” or “Leaving Now,” we can hear the vibration of each guitar string and drum beat. But on tracks like “Siren Sings” or “Goodnight,” the electronic components are a lot more pronounced, similar to bands like Brazilian Girls and Architecture in Helsinki.
Note* Album provided for objective review by our partners.