San Francisco’s masters of subtley experimentalist pastoral pop VETIVER have just released their third album, “Thing of The Past” comprising their own inimitable take on other folks’ songs — most of this impossibly obscure and impossibly delightful.
San Francisco’s masters of subtley experimentalist pastoral pop VETIVER have just released their third album, “Thing of The Past” comprising their own inimitable take on other folks’ songs — most of this impossibly obscure and impossibly delightful.
But Vetiver, from San Francisco, is basically a folk group with amps and drums, and covering other people’s songs isn’t a grand statement; it’s a folk ritual, a means of dissemination and cross-pollination. “Thing of the Past,” its third album, renders faithful versions of very obscure songs in their own style, which is Vetiver’s style anyway: late 1960s and early 1970s settled, meditative, West Coast electric folk-rock. The record is super studied, but never bloodless. And it’s much better than that sounds.
Andy Cabic, the band’s leader, doesn’t just choose, for example, a lesser-known Neil Young song. Instead he’s chosen a song whose original iteration contained possibly Mr. Young’s most obscure guest appearance: “Houses,” from Elyse Weinberg’s album “Elyse” (1968). Vetiver’s version is sweet and centered, careful and musical, a balance between larking and scholarship. I can’t quite understand how the band pulled it off.
Such is the case all the way through the album. “To Baby” by Biff Rose; “Lon Chaney,” by Garland Jeffreys; “Hurry on Sundown,” by Hawkwind; “Sleep a Million Years,” by Dia Joyce. (Who is Dia Joyce? I looked her up online and found almost nothing.) Somehow this is not a precious or pretentious record; these versions are delicate and sturdy at the same time. And the band recruits a few of its singer-songwriter heroes, Vashti Bunyan and Michael Hurley, from its favorite era. Mr. Cabic’s voice sounds contemporary with theirs, a little like Doug Yule’s, from the Velvet Underground.
Vetiver centers itself on slow, reliable grooves and drones; it finds the meat of a song and doesn’t grandstand. And yet the record so clearly follows Mr. Cabic’s pleasure principle that it short-circuits the good reasons not to make something like this. BEN RATLIFF/New York Times 5/12
Hometown: San Francisco, Calif.
Fun Fact: Michael Hurley sang backing vocals on his song “Blue Driver” when Vetiver recorded it for its new covers album A Thing of the Past.
Why It’s Worth Watching: Following its well-received 2006 album, To Find Me Gone, and its excellent new covers project, the prolific Vetiver is already working on its next batch of original material.
For Fans Of: Devendra Banhart, Neil Young, Jayhawks
As Andy Cabic speaks, he and the rest of his band Vetiver are pulling into New York to play two shows at Town Hall. The tour stop is in the middle of a 10-date Spring jaunt with former Jayhawk Gary Louris. Those going to the show will witness a double-header as the San Francisco pseudo-folk band opens the show and serves as Louris’ backing band.
But Vetiver is no stranger to playing other people’s songs, as evidenced by its recently released (May 13) record, A Thing of the Past. The album compiles 12 covers of Cabic’s favorite tunes, mostly songs by folk artists from the ’60s and ’70s. “It was just an experiment with a lot of songs we’ve been playing live,” Cabic says. “It was an effort to get the people who we’ve been playing with live into the studio, and I wanted to work with my friend [producer] Thom Monahan.”
A fine idea it was. Veitver’s driving acoustic rhythms behind Cabic’s warm voice mesh perfectly with the selections, which range from Loudon Wainwright’s “The Swimming Song” to Townes Van Zandt’s “Standin’,” with lesser known singer-songwriters such as Garland Jeffreys and Ian Matthews tucked in between. The songs result from a March 2007 session when the band convened in Sacramento to work with Monahan. “The whole album’s live, all the basic tracks,” Cabic says, adding that the “freedom and restraint” of doing other people’s songs instead of writing his own contributed to the natural feel of the album.
But don’t think the band’s content only playing other artist’s tunes. The Thing of the Past sessions doubled as a warm up for Vetiver’s new record of original songs, which the band began recording in April. And this time, Cabic and Co. won’t be tucked away in the studio, they’ll be out touring while they record, playing covers from Thing of the Past as well as original cuts, including songs from the upcoming album. “We’re always sort of touring and playing our own songs and covers,” Cabic reflects. “Like we did before we released a covers album.” David Rogers/Pastemagazine.com 5/18
ÂVetiver has come a long, long way from their early, dreaded “freak-folk” tag. This San Francisco band led by gifted composer-guitarist-singer Andy Cabic overflowed with confidence and an abundance of new material fresh from their recording sessions in Sacramento for their upcoming third album of originals. In the meantime, this headlining gig celebrated their newly released cover tune collection, Thing Of The Past (released May 12 on Gnomonsong), which dips into the catalogs of Michael Hurley (“Blue Driver”), Norman Greenbaum (“Hook & Ladder”), Loudon Wainwright III (“The Swimming Song”), Hawkwind (“Hurry On Sundown”) and more well picked obscurities. The difference between Thing Of The Past and most covers albums is they focused on material that genuinely suits them. There’s no obvious pandering or gimmicky bullshit, just cool tunes played with feeling and care – much like what we witnessed during their section of the evening.
Cabic has never been in better voice, and the entire band – Otto Hauser (drums), Brent Dunn (bass), Sanders Trippe (guitar, vocals) and Kevin Barker (guitar, banjo, vocals) – seemed simultaneously tight and loose, like a fresh rubber band, after their recent stint opening for and backing Gary Louris (The Jayhawks). They are empathetic players and they followed the curves and stops of each piece with hunting dog focus. Though each was throwing in his own part, there was a collective sense of movement that flowed behind the whole set, where they moan about being “broke down and busted” one minute and then emerge into pastoral calm the next. Each emotional shift and musical turn felt organic, no matter how much it differed from the ones on either side of a change. Portions conjured the high country vibe of Workingman’s Dead while others, notably a raging electric tear through “You May Be Blue” from 2006’s incredible To Find Me Gone, wrestled the blues into new spaces, manhandling them like Quicksilver Messenger Service and Moby Grape used to. Capable of great gentleness and harnessed meanness, Vetiver showed a wider spectrum than any of their soundbites ever suggested. This is a seriously good live act to keep your ears open for in the future. Dennis Cook/jambase.com 5/14
ÂVetiver Thing of the Past (Gnomonsong)Â This dozen song set of covers is a real joy. Andy Cabic and his Vetiver cronies give evidence to their cool record collections with these sterling and lovingly rendered songs. We get gems penned by Elyse Weinberg, Michael Hurley, Townes Van Zandt, Loudon Wainwright III, Garland Jeffries, Biff Rose, Ian Matthews, Bobby Charles, Norman Greenbaum, and Derroll Adams among others. And to their credit they are not covering the most well known tracks by these songwriting wizards, but rather lesser known beauties. So we get the great Swimming Song by Loudon rather than Dead Skunk, Blue Driver rather than Werewolf by Hurley, and the incredible Lon Chaney by Garland Jeffries rather than his better known Wild In the Streets. The incredible Vashti Bunyan sings beautifully on Dia Joyce’s Sleep a Million Years. What makes this so truly marvelous is the faithful yet heartfelt renderings they give, and that they all seem to fit Andy like a well tailored suit. Overall one of my favorite Vetiver albums so far. George Parsons/Dream Magazine #9
Vetiver’s last album, To Find Me Gone, was one of my favorite records of 2006. For some reason, I felt like I was supposed to like Califone more at the time, but Vetiver kept drawing me in with its folky, spooky, knock-your-socks-off songs. So it was with both enthusiasm and trepidation that I approached the band’s new covers album, Thing of the Past. It’s not too often that a band pulls off the covers concept in a satisfying way, but if anyone, Vetiver’s talented leader Andy Cabic could carry the band through.
And carry he does. Thing of the Past is a potent disc, sounding very much like the modern indie folk that Vetiver does so well, in addition to conjuring up memories of the Band and their ’60s and ’70s ilk. Taken as a whole, it’s way more upbeat than any previous Vetiver efforts. Or, more precisely, it’s without the quiet spaces in between.
But why a covers record, especially since it’s been two years since the band’s last release? Isn’t a covers record normally a stopgap?
“I wanted to get my band that I’ve been touring with since the last album into the studio,” said Cabic over coffee at his local haunt in the Sunset. In person, he’s a soft-spoken guy with a rustic beard and a blazer from a vintage store. “So I just thought to record some of the covers we’ve been doing live, it might be a fun idea. It wasn’t like a grand concept behind it. It was just another opportunity to record, and introduce my band to Thom.” (Thom is Thom Monahan, formerly with the Pernice Brothers, and Cabic’s partner in producing from the very beginning).Thing of the Past features songs chosen from roughly a six-year period of time, from 1967 to ’73, but from some unusual sources: Hawkwind for instance (odd choice), Garland Jeffreys (remember him?), Loudon Wainwright (okay, more understandable), and others. What makes a song worth covering? “Well, it’s a balance of a good lyric, a good sound, something that’s very compelling that stays with you,” he said. “All of these songs have that quality. I listened to them a lot at home, they became staples of friends of mine, and I kind of adopted them.”
Rich-sounding guitar strumming opens the first track, “Houses,” from forgotten Canadian folky Elyse Weinberg, before the band kicks in with a loose, Saturday-afternoon kind of feel. On “Roll On Babe,” adopted from a Ronnie Lane album, the old-school Fender bass sound comes to fore, like Carol Kaye was sitting in. One of the sunniest moments comes on Norman Greenbaum’s “Hook & Ladder,” with its chorus of whoa, whoa, whoa. But that’s a close call, because sunny vibes permeate the album. (Check out “Standin'” by Townes Van Zandt, where the loose-limbed groove belies the beaten-down lyrics.) The album closes with what could be a statement of purpose: Bobby Charles’ “I Must Be in a Good Place Now,” repurposed as a gentle lullaby.
While past Vetiver projects have essentially been loose amalgamations of Cabic’s friends (famously Devendra Banhart and Joanna Newsom, among others), the move to record the band he has toured with is a major step in a different direction. While To Find Me Gone boasted a huge cast of contributors, Thing of the Past was primarily laid down live in the studio with Cabic, Brent Dunn on bass, Sanders Trippe on guitar and vocals, Otto Hauser on drums and keyboards, and Kevin Barker on guitar, banjo, and vocals. The tight band creates a vibe and doesn’t let it go. This makes for an easygoing ride through the album, perfect for top-down drives along the coast on a sunny day, but with enough subtle production tweaks to satisfy a late-night headphone listen.
“Well, that’s the fun part, for me,” Cabic said of those studio touches, from the occasional huge snare drum hit to some subliminal adjustments to his vocals. “That’s one of the reasons I always work with Thom is that we have a really easy rapport and we always seem to want the same thing from a Vetiver song. Instinctively, he’ll move things in a direction that I wanted without me having to broach the subject half the time.” But, he added, “Everything was sounding so good live that we didn’t add a lot of stuff.”
Even so, some of the recent studio experience bodes well for the next time around. “With my vocals, we’re still trying to find a good pairing with a microphone,” Cabic said. “We tried a lot of things, and some of them I didn’t care for, so we reconvened at Thom’s place in Los Angeles and got it towards the end. So that’s really exciting for me, because the next record we’ll have more idea of what works and we can be more focused about it.”
Another notable facet of Thing of the Past is the presence of two of Cabic’s musical heroes, Vashti Bunyan, who duets with him on “Sleep a Million Years,” and maverick folk troubadour Michael Hurley, whose other devotees include Cat Power (who included Hurley’s songs on her own covers records). “Michael was actually coming to San Francisco to play … and he stopped by the studio,” Cabic said. “His arm started acting up, so he bailed on the show and stayed with us the whole time we were tracking.” Hurley ended up playing on a few songs and singing on his own song, “Blue Driver,” where his slightly craggy voice provides a nice contrast with Cabic’s smooth, almost nonchalant delivery.
Perhaps the only thing more one could ask for would be Cabic’s own songs. “I’ve been touring a lot, and I haven’t found a way to reconcile that with writing,” he explained. “I need a place I’m familiar with, and some time alone, walk around, be relaxed about it. I can’t do it with any degree of expectancy, I have to do it for the fun of it.” He claims to have just enough songs for a new record, although there’s time yet. And with the coalescing of his new band, it’s entirely possible that a new album of originals will be a different animal entirely from his earlier efforts.
With thoughts of that new record being started this fall after a summer of touring, Cabic is enthusiastic about the coming months. His eyes light up as he thinks about the future: “I feel like we haven’t even scratched the surface of what we could be doing.” Tom Chandler/East Bay Express 5/14
ÂIt’s been two years since Vetiver released To Find Me Gone, a record with a relatively quiet following initially that slowly but eventually became a bit of an obsession amongst followers of the new weird America movement that was blossoming all over the place at that time. The obvious ah-ha moment was when everyone learned of the folk oddity Devendra Banhart tie-in, him playing for them in the beginning, and Vetiver frontman Andy Cabric sitting in with Banhart. So, this follow up to To Find Me Gone is the anticipated one, and it’s really interesting that in light of that Vetiver would choose to release a record of covers from folk artists from the ’50s to the ’70s, many of them obscure unless you’re a dedicated crate digger. But, it’s interesting because what comes of Thing of the Past is an enduring, beautiful record that nudges one to dig deeper to understand who these songs came from and how Vetiver translates them into their own. While it doesn’t really show fans of Vetiver where their potential currently is with creating their own music, this record does leave someone like me wanting and wishing for more.
Upon realizing this was a covers album, I immediately began searching around the internet and Rhapsody to find out as much as I could. From what was readily available, here’s the rundown of original versus Vetiver:
Track 1: “Houses” (Elyse Weinberg) – Weinberg had a 1968 folky pysch-pop classic with the self-titled Elyse that was reissued in 2001. with one of the most noteworthy tracks on the album being “Houses”, which for the original featured Neil Young. It’s an easy tune about the impossibility of trading places.
Track 2: “Roll on Babe” (Derroll Adams) – Adams was a busker on the ’50s West Coast music scene who eventuallyteamed up with Ramblin’ Jack Elliott to record a few records. legend has it they drank, smoked grass, and recorded whatever they came up with at that time. Adams is a guy known more for who he influenced than his own music. I don’t have access to the original, but Vetiver’s rendition is lush, hushed, and layered with tinkering acoustics and brushed drums.
Track 3: “Sleep a Million Years (Dia Joyce) – I can’t find anything on Dia Joyce from the internet, so if anyone out there knows, fill us in. But the name of the song is great, and is presented by Vetiver with overriding, almost wraith female vocals loosely harmonized by Cabric, backed by piano, and more of those tinkering acoustics and slowly tapped cymbals.
Track 4: “Hook and Ladder” (Norman Greenbaum) – Greenbaum is essentially a one-hit wonder with his 1969-70 song “Spirit in the Sky”, which sold two million copies. He implements some introductory whistling and mandolin on “Hook and Ladder”, but Vetiver strips away the mandolin for their version, giving it an overall less nuanced, British folk vibe and a more Grateful Dead vibe. Of course, Vetiver also introduces a trumpet, which Greenbaum did not.
Track 5: “To Baby” (Biff Rose) – To my understanding, Rose started as a standup comedian strapped with a banjo, that was profiled for such in a 1965 issue of Time magazine. Vetiver’s take on “To Baby” features neither banjo nor any detectable comedy, but following the theme of these covers, it’s an easy tune with lyrics like, “In a changing world, baby, I’m just learning how to sing.”
Track 6: “Road to Ronderlin” (Ian Matthews) – Matthews was a member of Fairport Convention during the early years and later went on to front bands Plainsong and Matthews Southern Comfort, the latter being the only version I could find of this song. If you’re familiar with any of the previous, you know what you’re getting here. Love this verse: “Oh my eyes I am so much a fool / And a victim of a wondering mind / From the path I led astray with the sunrise far away / And the mist is over deepened skies.”
Track 7: “Lon Chaney” (Garland Jeffreys) – Perhaps the most left field of the mix, Garland Jeffreys, an African-American and Puerto Rican singer-songwriter, blends rock, reggae, blues, and soul and apparently is old pals with Lou Reed. I’ve never heard the original, but can only imagine that they’ve turned a smooth R&B tune into a sparse folk piano ballad. That takes vision and I commend Vetiver for it.
Track 8: “Hurry on Sundown” (Hawkind) – English band that flirted with prog and metal and psychedelic sci-fi surrealism, which Vetiver does proud if not a tad bit less nuanced than the original. Either way, if you like gnomes and fairies and elves, as no doubt many Vetiver fans do, then this is the stuff for you.
Track 9: “The Swimming Song” (Loudon Wainright III) – One of the most recognizable names here, Wainright was claimed to be one of the new Dylans of the late ’60s, and “The Swimming Song” was the first track of the 1973 album Attempted Mustache, which pictures Wainright and what looks to be a beat-up polar bear sculpture. Vetiver’s version is a near note-for-note and sound-for-sound rendition of this bluegrass folk tune. Fantastic.
Track 10: “Blue Driver” (Michael Hurley) – I can’t find anything on this guy, but Vetiver’s version sounds, again, a lot like a Grateful Dead tune. It’s got a foot tappin’ beat and the lyrics make me long for a cross country road trip: “Looking down the highway as far as I can see / There ain’t nobody coming but my old truck and me.”
Track 11: “Standin” (Townes Van Zandt) – Van Zandt is a personal favorite of mine, so I’m biased with this song, which comes from his 1972 album titled High, Low & In Between. I dare say that Vetiver have created a more sonic version sound-wise, but they can’t capture the weary damage that Townes’ vocalsÂ can. but who in their right mindÂ would expect them to?
Track 12: “I Must Be in a Good Place Now” (Bobby Charles) – One of the biggest R&B singers of the ’50s, a version driven by a gentle piano, which Vetiver translates with delicate and sparse guitar playing, giving in to the tangy folk inflections needed to make it their own. A nice surprise and a mellow sentiment to close out this covers album that’s full of revered yet obscured singer-songwriters. Jocelynn Hoppa/Crawdaddy.com 5/14
While the lineup has changed in the last few years, the band continued to receive praise for its most recent original release, “To Find Me Gone.” Vetiver is currently touring to promote its latest effort, which hits stores Tuesday.
Things of the Past” is a cover album composed of songs from a few of his influences and a few songs that the band enjoys covering at live shows, Cabic said.
“Those are songs that I like a lot by performers I dig,” Cabic said. “It’s a wide range of people, from Bobby Charles to Louden Wainwright to Garland Jeffreys. [It’s] just a whole bunch of different people.”
Cabic enjoyed putting together the album of covers, he said.
“Everyone learns how to play other people’s songs when they’re getting started,” he said, “and it’s kind of a tradition and it’s just fun.” Visalia Times Delta 5/9/08
ÂThing of the Past is a quirky, lovingly considered covers album, unearthing long lost gems and also-ran album tracks. The band wraps these songs affectionately in warm arrangements of guitars, banjo, strings and voices. Yet though the album is worthy on its own terms, it is maybe even more interesting as a hint at how Vetiver has evolved. Or, more precisely, how the band shrugged off the free folk prettiness of the self-titled debut for the far richer, more inclusive vibe of To Find Me Gone. It was, apparently, all in the records they were listening to.Â
For instance, consider “Road To Rondelin,” the Ian Matthews cover. Matthews recorded this song for Matthews Southern Comfort in 1970. Matthews was in the process of becoming a pop songwriter. He had just broken from Fairport Convention, because its rigid all-folk focus didn’t give him enough scope for original songwriting. It is not hard to see parallels with Andy Cabic’s own career, beginning right at the center of the freak folk universe (next to Devendra) and journeyed outward towards pop. And even if that’s a stretch, the song is nearly perfect for him, his cool, wistful voice slipping effortlessly into Matthews’ melodies. They have almost the same timbre, the two of them, the same gentle unforcedness, and the song blossoms again in its new setting.Â
The other great cover here is “Lon Chaney,” originally sung by Garland Jeffreys for his long out-of-print solo debut. Haunted and haunting, the cut starts in churchy, pensive piano notes and evocative verses about the 30s film star, climaxing quietly, mournfully and beautifully in high keening and discordant surges of strings.Â
In the less familiar songs, Vetiver sounds almost quintessentially Vetiver-ish, its tangled acoustic guitar lines punctuated by big clashing cymbals, its rhythms slow but rollicking, big flourishes of piano allowed to echo then still into silence. There’s a guest appearance from Vashti Bunyan, another folk icon who insists she was always a pop star, in the sweet textured “Sleep a Million Years.” Here Bunyan’s clean soprano cuts gently through a web of piano and snare patter, all clear-eyed 1960s pop except for the warmth of country pedal steel.Â
There is, by the way, a good deal of country and blues on hand, starting with the banjo shuffle of “Roll On Babe,” a track by 1960s protest artist Derroll Adams, and running through the whistled and sung-along choruses of “Hook and Ladder,” and into the chugging groove of Michael Hurley’s “Blue Driver.” “Hurry On Sundown,” the first single ever released by Hawkwind, evolves out of an almost Takoma-esque finger-picked introduction before gaining speed and roisterous harmonica. You start to recognize these roots-based influences as the key ingredient that pulled Vetiver out of its fairy bower after the debut and grounded them firmly in the warm, real world for To Find Me Gone. . Jennifer Kelly/PureMusic.com 5/6
– Jonathan Wilson
ÂVetiver is simply one of America’s best bands, and some of the most vital and timeless music being made. Andy Cabic’s understanding and deep knowledge of great songs and dynamic music is astounding, it does not suprise me that he cut his teeth in North Carolina, he has a way of giving himself to a song, every moment in his performance is focused, and it’s an inspiration. He is one of a few friends that makes the hair on my arms stand up a few times during his shows, and on record.
As Jonathan Wilson notes, Vetiver is a vital force amongst a group of Southern-born musicians making an impact on the California music scene.Â Although Thing Of The Past is a record of cover songs, it may be the best place to start if you are new to Vetiver.
Virginia-born Andy Cabic leads this California-based ensemble and as fellow musician Jonathan Wilson notes, Cabic “cut his teeth in North Carolina” playing in a hard core band called the Raymond Brake.Â After that band fell apart, he picked himself up and headed west, falling in with a folk music scene centered around the San Francisco area.
Thing Of The Past feels as though Cabic and company have firmly found their footing in an artistic sense.Â Vetiver was an extreme reaction to the Raymond Brake, every bit as quiet as that band was loud.Â Cabic’s initial focus was on songs and presenting them in a most unadorned fashion.
Cabic comments on the Vetiver website that making a record of covers freed him musically.Â He focused his and the band’s energy on the recording process rather than having to worry about presenting newly written songs.Â The song choice also allowed him the luxury of showing Vetiver’s musical values at large.
Cabic chose writers of the folksinger era like Michael Hurley, Loudon Wainwright, and Elyse Weinberg, but he also picked songs that were part of the British folk rock scene, Roll On Babe, Road To Ronderlin, and Hurry Sundown, either written by or made famous by Ronnie Lane, Iain Matthews, and Hawkwind, respectively.
Thing Of The Past provides the listener an ever-intensifying arc because it begins with Vetiver’s classic and hushed sound holding sway over the first half of the record.Â At the midpoint, Hurry on Sundown kicks things into another gear.Â This allows Vetiver to show that it is a tightly wound ensemble who can rock in a laid back style and groove.
Cabric’s voice is almost a dead ringer for George Harrison’s.Â It is thin, but incredibly soulful and melodic.Â Whereas so many singers of today have channeled Neil Young of late, Cabric’s Harrison-like delivery allows for a different emotional palette.Â This makes some of the upbeat songs sound like Traveling Wilbury b-sides, a good thing indeed.
To show his sense of home, Cabic also picked a few of our region’s more interesting songwriters.Â To Baby is by Biff Rose of New Orleans, who has been widely credited as a large influence on David Bowie’s Hunky Dory era.Â The album closes with two fantastic songs by two legends,Â Townes Van Zandt‘s Standin’ and Bobby Charles’ I Must Be In A Good Place Now.
Thing Of The Past becomes Cabic making his own mix tape as a love letter to his influences and his audience.Â His vision realizes both singularity and significance.Â Looking forward to their next record of originals, Vetiver show all of the signs that they are on the verge of a breakthrough.– Jim Markel/Swampland.com 5/21
ÂPLAN A: Vetiver, ASTRA, Jonathan Wilson @ The Casbah . Vetiver is made up of Devendra Banhart folk compatriots so rootsy they named themselves after a type of grass. Or maybe they just really dig botany. Nathan Dinsdale/San Diego City Beat 5/7
ÂVetiver’s vital new album, Thing of the Past, features covers of great, beardy folk nuggets by singer-songwriters from the legendary (Townes Van Zandt) to the obscure (Stand up if you own the original version of Dia Joyce’s “Sleep A Million Years.” Anyone? Beuller?). It’s full of spirited performances and an obvious passion and respect for the sources, and it’s out this week. You can hear head Vetiver Andy Cabic talking about the making of the album and see a live performance clip below. There’s a full-blown tour coming too, so you’ll have an opportunity to experience Vetiver’s folk-rockin’ rave-up in the flesh. Jim Allen/Prefixmag.com 5/14
I’ve really been loving the new Vetiver record Thing of the Past. I agree with Ben Ratliff of the New York Times, there are many reasons to not like this record, mostlyÂ stemmingÂ from the fact that covers records are often fraught with peril. Yet, on Thing of the Past Vetiver manages to navigate these dangers by selecting obscure songs, that just also happen to be really good. The sound is warm, summery and downright pleasant. Thing of the Past seems to hit its mark by giving the listener the experience of discovering some forgotten record, blowing away the dust and enjoying something old for the first time. Matt Amoroso/Starkmagazine.blogspot.com 5/14
Known in some circles as Devendra Banhart’s occasional touring band, Vetiver is also remarkable on their own. Tonight they play in support of their new album, Thing of the Past, which features covers of relatively obscure ’60s and ’70s songs that have inspired the band, and complement their warm folk sound perfectly. By Sandra Fernando/Campus Circle 5/7