Redefining the “folk” genre

By: Kristen Birch

Sigh No More Album Cover

The new folk-rock group on the scenes is the inimitable, energetic and
jovial band of Mumford & Sons.  Marcus Mumford, Ben
Lovett
, Country Winston and Ted Dwane are four West Londoners
who have accomplished the purpose of expressing their passions for
experimental music through their work.
 
The band formed in 2007 and by 2009, released their debut album, Sigh
No More
.  The album, which was awarded the Best British Album at
the BRIT awards, was instantly popular, due to use of the mandolin,
accordion, dobro and the band’s signature instrument, the banjo. 
The country genre has been encompassed with a twist of rock,
melancholy and jubilance. 

Mumford & Sons became the first British band to sell one million
copies of an album in the UK and US since 2009; the last band to do
such a thing is the renowned Coldplay.   The subtle,
theological depths within the songs’ romantic, Shakespearian lyrics
are identifiably relevant to Christianity.  Marcus Mumford (the lead
singer)’s parents, John and Eleanor are the official national
leaders of the Vineyard Churches UK and Ireland.  The spiritual
intensity of the album is present in the powerful and fierce lyrics of
the songs. 

Pain seems to be present in many of the tracks, which makes the album
all-the-more honest and unique.  The opening song of the album, Sigh
No More
, speaks of a “Love that will not betray you, dismay or
enslave you, it will set you free” and the fourth track, Roll Away
Your Stone
, accentuates the biblical purpose of refinement
through the words, “It seems that all my bridges have been burned,
but you say ‘that’s exactly how this grace thing works.”

The smoothest, most divine track is Awake My Soul because of its
capability to encapsulate the overall message of how life is a voyage
and that turning to things that the heart does not know will not lead
to happiness.  The words, “lend me your heart and I’ll just let
you fall…, but your soul you must keep totally free” establishes
the idea that the purpose of life is all in aid of accepting one’s
maker. 

The band is to release a second album in 2012 and is expected to have
the same effect on listeners as Sigh No More.  One cannot explain the
experience to be anything, but pure bliss and a feeling of
honey-filled warmth. 

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