From the sonic wash of “Rain,” the first single from Fjord Explorer‘s debut album, I Know I’m Awake, one knows this will not be a standard acoustic affair. The Jacksonville, Florida foursome’s self-described “gloom folk” dabbles in human emotion and frailty. Vocalist/guitarist Connor Hickey makes this clear on album opener, “Click,” with its dictum of “This ain’t gonna be our night.”
Filling the dark hours, death and drink haunt I Know I’m Awake, from the existential treatise of “Grandeur” and pensive closer “Low” to the galloping anthem “Only the Worthy” with Hickey singing, “I know I’ll be alright / ‘Cause I’ve already hit rock bottom.” The drunken rumination of “Complacent” recalling a more concise Mark Kozelek.
Stark and simple, I Know I’m Awake is composed of songs for all seasons. Succinct yet varied, the album speaks to one’s inner turmoil without offering any catharsis. I Know I’m Awake is all the better for that omission.
Definitely Vinyl Worthy, you can stream/purchase I Know I’m Awake below.