Listening to folk duo Lilo’s Wall’s debut, Rowan EP, I find myself transported to some idyllic artisan café: nibbling on bread and hummus, their silken harmonies permeating through rays of sun that fall through the windows. Don’t be put off by this insufferably middle-class milieu, what I’m trying to convey is that their four-track release is thoroughly enthusing and demonstrates an impressive professionalism in both the lyrics and production.
The EP consists of three original pieces and a concluding remix of the second track, Waiting, by an artist named Hambleton. This last track is a delightful inclusion as it meshes with the light, summery vibe of the rest of the album, but demonstrates another side of the band’s appeal as the Electro tinge of the rework adds the extra dimension which all folk EPs need.
All My Life is a strong opener to the track list, immediately exhibiting what the girls are all about: tight, subtle guitar melodies and a killer vocal partnership. What I found really interesting in this song was the proper, country-style panged notes which kick in about halfway through, instilling a sophistication which is so often absent in the music of artists of a similar age to these two.
The original version of Waiting also has a maturity to it; what sounds like a cello or viola behind the guitar amplifying the slightly melancholic tone of the track. On top of this, a slightly wider range of notes in the vocal element of the song not only goes that bit further to express the emotion in the lyrics, but also proves the band can perform a variety of styles.
Following the slower-paced Waiting, penultimate track, Tell Me, enters the EP as the most upbeat of the four tracks. Again, the country element of their music is prominent with a banjo-esque sound to the instrumental. The lyrics are uplifting and have a purity to them that can only come from a band the like of Lilo’s Wall: young, ambitious, and fun.
As they reach the end of their school career, the members, Helen and Christie, are planning a national tour of sorts. So if you’re looking for some heartening, high quality music, packed with charm, keep your eyes peeled for this irresistible double-act.