It only takes one listen to the opening track on the Toronto band's latest before two things strike you: first, this album will be an enjoyable, beautiful experience; and second, it's shocking that a band of this calibre isn't far more popular than it currently is. A Northern Chorus's fourth album is a patiently constructed, emotionally rich work full of dreamy, hazy melodies made even lusher by the addition of cello and pedal steel guitar. While there are certainly elements of alt-country, the band has also developed a knack for epic, almost Godspeed! You Black Emperor-like crescendos, as on the towering Ethic Of The Pioneer. This should easily stand as one of the year's best.
A Northern Chorus swoop into the El Mocambo Friday (April 6).