On the whole, The Prettiest Shade Of Blue, the latest release from folk quintet The Loomis Fargo Gang, remains laid-back, never deviating from the speed of an easy listen. The eight-track album begins with the slow-going number “Seventeen White Azaleas.” With lyrics sweet and low, this subtle ballad carries on gently in the nature of a lullaby, nearly fading into background noise. As it continues, it gains in strength gradually as a guitar strums quietly in time with the vocalist’s soft-spoken melodies. This first number comes to a close with a sonically pleasing piano piece that meshes into the next song.
The Virginia roots of this group come more into focus as the disc continues. “Trampoline,” the next song in the tracklisting, has a distinct Southern vibe and instrumental twang. The down-home feeling of the cut is accented by a female vocal accompaniment, as well as a steady pace with a country-inspired lead guitar line. The fifth track, “She Will Be Mine,” is a syrupy-sweet love song that incorporates Western piano elements into the music. The simple yet slightly humorous lyrics repeat, “Give me time, she will be mine.”
Lyrically, the band continues the whimsical silliness into “Tootsie In The Breeze,” maintaining the light-hearted theme. The genre that this band belongs to is somewhere between the blurred lines of folk and alternative, as they draw upon country, blues and soft rock for insight. The final piece is an instrumental, slow-picked acoustic type of song. “Plantin’ Blueberries” is the most emotional number even though it’s wordless. It complements the whole album, providing closure and leaving the listener wanting to hear more. Although it’s difficult to put a finger on what The Loomis Fargo Gang were aiming for, The Prettiest Shade Of Blue is a pleasant compilation.
In A Word: Soothing