From the ominous opening notes of "Cathedral" to the closing bars of "The Autumn Sun Will Set the Land on Fire", Will Witwham sets a melancholic moods as Lake Forest in his new album Silver Skies. On this release, Witwham – also songwriter and vocalist for Winnipeg's the Wilderness of Manitoba - creates pure, raw, straight-from-the-heart, tea-drinking music. One can almost picture Witwham staring out his bedroom window, rendered expressionless at the brutal Winnipeg winter with a pen in hand, and writing his thoughts down absentmindedly. This portrait of a troubled artist seems to be one he sincerely wishes to convey, for the album was deeply inspired by Dave Egger's book A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius. The album invokes images of a lonely log cabin; a reclusive wilderness theme cited as inspiration for many artists, including Grammy-winner Justin Vernon of Bon Iver. Lake Forest’s "Untitled" is a gem that features guitar-work reminiscent of Van Morrison’s “Into the Mystic.” Drawing similarities to noted folk musicians such as Bon Iver and Van Morrison are unavoidable upon listening to Silver Skies – the album echoes with emotion and quiet contemplation. It is ideal for those rainy spring days you spend indoors, pleading for summer to break through the dreary gloom of grey clouds.
By Nathan Marsh
Mar 19, 2012