Album review: Your Friend, “Gumption”

by Jon E. Lynch

Your Friend, “Gumption”

Available: Now via the Domino Recording Co. on compact disc and vinyl

“Gumption” is the debut full-length album from Taryn Miller, who records under the moniker Your Friend. Before its release, this was easily one of my most anticipated records of 2016. After a handful of listens, I do believe it has completely lived up to my personal, self-imposed hype.

I was first introduced to Your Friend while browsing one of my favorite independent record stores, the Love Garden, during the holidays in late 2013/early 2014. As is customary when I visit any independent record store, I asked the clerk to recommend their favorite local releases of the year. Without hesitation they reached for a copy of Miller’s then-recent debut EP “Jekyll / Hyde.” I thought little of it until returning to Durango a week or so later. While unpacking, I put the record on and was pretty instantly intrigued. The six-song EP stayed on the turntable through many a-side-listen-flip, b-side-listen-repeat regiments much longer than may be the norm for a record of that length. So I was very much looking forward to the follow up full-length.

Warm textures, found sounds, loops and sparse but well-placed electronic ambience fill out the debut, thankfully not deviating too far from what drew me in during those repeated first EP listens, but rather expounding upon them. Miller’s voice and sonic experimentation make for a record that is well suited for repeated listens, preferably too loud and through headphones so as to not miss out on any nuance.

Recommended if you’re a fan of Atlas Sound, Sharon Van Etten, Wye Oak, Alex G or Sylvan Esso.

Jon E. Lynch, [email protected]

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