Themes of transience and humanity weave through folk-rock duo Free Thought’s debut album, In Her Eyes. Consisting of sisters Jen and Kate Vanderlyn, Free Thought is a duo on a mission – to remind people to observe and interpret the temporal beauty of the world around them.
In Her Eyes is what Free Thought bassist and harmony vocalist Kate Vanderlyn calls “a journey, a musical photo series that begins in a dream and ends up in reality.” From the solid, laid-back groove of “In Her Eyes” to passionate, intense reality of “Sunday Morning Station,” In Her Eyes explores the things that make us human – devotion, curiosity, disillusionment, transience, and hope.
An 11-track journey of folk-rock infused with jazz and Romantic poetry, In Her Eyes features the crystalline and resonant vocal abilities of lead singer Jen Vanderlyn. Coupled with her dramatic voice on songs as the powerful “In the Summertime He Comes” and the Orwellian rocker, “The Mirror,” is Jen’s solid, driving rhythm guitar and confident lead guitar. Kate Vanderlyn provides harmonies both haunting and heartfelt in songs like the lonely “Beat Up Shore Town Serenade” and the hymn-like “Greetings from Dreamland.” Her walking bass lines are intricate and give each song a unique and definitive groove.
Julliard musician Bill Wisnowski adds electric and acoustic violin to a number of tracks, including the Springsteen-esque “Sunday Morning Station” and the haunting “The Pony.” His expressive dobro adds shades of color to “In Her Eyes” and “You Can’t Close Your Eyes to my Love,” two songs about ephemerality and the complexities of human love. Bill’s pennywhistle, along with Jen’s yearning and nostalgic vocal in the protest-themed “Brave and Handsome Soldier,” give the song haunting overtones of the Revolutionary war.
Berklee jazz drummer Charlie van Kirk fills out the bottom, adding energetic, driving beats to the surf rock reminiscent “Mr. Dream Catcher” and the bright, syncopated “Storm Song.”
Recorded at BackRoom Studios in Roxbury, Connecticut, In Her Eyes is an embodiment of Free Thought’s formally written mission statement. “We strive, through our music, to encourage in our listeners simple appreciation of life’s natural beauty,” Jen says, “And we hope that by doing so, we’ll inspire them to interpret and express what they see, as well.”
Though Jen and Kate have only been performing as Free Thought since 2005, playing their way through coffee houses, town greens, and charity events through Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey, they are ready to spread their mission to everyone who wants to listen.
Check them out on MySpace and Facebook: Search Free Thought