Old Smokey: Wester Easter

The Athens, Georgia-based quintet Old Smokey is one peculiar entity that has only been around for two years. With an experimental sound that heavily incorporates obscure musicianship into the group’s Western stylings, it could be quite the challenge to figure what kind of genre to classify Old Smokey in when listening to their debut full-length, Wester Easter, for the first time.

Strumming away into the cheerfully vibrant introduction, “Dead Man’s Pose,” the opening’s bright and eagerly upbeat tempo gracefully introduces you to the creative enthusiasm behind the group’s dynamic with ironically morbid lyrics, as the record spontaneously enters a mysteriously desolate realm that has been conceived throughout by interludes with titles that repeatedly use the word “Transylvania.”
The simplest way to help visually grasp the context of Wester Easter is to imagine as if The Lonesome Crowded West was written as a score for a spaghetti-western film. This suggestive interpretation could be easily identified through the single “You’re Always Gonna Be Able To Get One More,” which will instantly draw you in with slow-paced banjo chords to match key with a mesmerizing lap steel lead.

Even though “Every Day I’m Building A Fool” and “Vacant Lot” also provide gripping lyrical imagery to add to the soothing nature of this album, several other heavily instrumental songs like “Mapache” and “Drifter” add distinctive illusion to Wester Easter’s captivating persona with wondrous and exotic orchestral variation.

While Wester Easter pieces together a vast and unique list of influences, the band’s riveting musical approach makes up for an intriguing and ecstatic release to venture. If you ever find yourself stranded in a desert longing for a spiritual epiphany to blissfully guide you back to civilization, Wester Easter is the perfect soundtrack to accommodate you for any empowering existential journey into the unknown.

In A Word: Fascinating