Metascore
80

Generally favorable reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
  1. May 14, 2013
    82
    No longer fumbling through novice flubs, Bright Sunny South features the most accomplished musicianship of Amidon’s career.
  2. May 20, 2013
    80
    Though other instruments emerge from their corners their sparing deployments against Amidon's fragile voice lends them a far greater power, like vivid flourishes of colour in a starkly monochrome film. [Jun 2013, p.92]
  3. May 17, 2013
    80
    There’s a melancholic elegance in Amidon’s pieces that express nuanced forms of sadness, and as demonstrated in songs like Short Life and Pharaoh, sublime chamber arrangements spruce up those feelings of sorrow.
  4. May 15, 2013
    80
    Bright Sunny South is Amidon's sixth solo effort and like previous releases, the key to the album's potency lies in how the Brattleboro, Vermont, native creates emotional dichotomies and then bridges the expansive gulfs in between.
  5. May 13, 2013
    80
    It is not one thing (folk) or the other (post-rock, post-classical experiment) or even, really a blend of the two, but rather something fresh and idiosyncratic and worth exploring.
  6. May 13, 2013
    80
    Amidon has honed his music's suspenseful edge. [Jun 2013, p.90]
  7. May 13, 2013
    80
    It’s a combination [simultaneously sound contemporary and old-time] that has been present in his music from day one and Bright Sunny South proves it’s one that still reaps significant dividends.
  8. May 13, 2013
    80
    Bright Sunny South doesn't stray too far from Amidon's previous work, but still suggests his development in its gorgeous production, increasingly deft arrangements, and a general sense of greater confidence and vision throughout the record.
  9. May 13, 2013
    80
    A strange but compelling set.
  10. May 13, 2013
    77
    He not only has an impressively deep knowledge of traditional song forms, but takes liberties with the country's past in order to document his own personal present.
  11. 75
    What he does well here, and has always done well, is to embody traditional music; its harmony, its lyrical themes, and at the same time imbue the music with a vitality that never feels forced or disrespectful of its roots.
  12. 70
    Amidon sounds equally curious about the songs he picked up from his parents as he is about those he picked up from the radio; so naturally, juxtaposition plays a huge role in this album.
  13. May 23, 2013
    70
    The track [“Weeping Mary”] isn’t as simple as it seems, yet it works nicely as just-a-folk-song, the sort of approach that Amidon’s been refining for a decade now. Bright Sunny South is full of these unhurried, easy moments, and succeeds because of it.
  14. May 13, 2013
    70
    As ever, Amidon mediates between the folk music of his ancestry and the popular music of his day, finding a unique modernity in his marrying of past and present.
  15. May 13, 2013
    70
    With Bright Sunny South, Amidon has taken a huge step forward as a folk artist, creating arrangements which preserve his musicianship, while deepening the maturity of his interpretive skills.
  16. 60
    Amidon’s plaintive, boyish vocals make up in character what they lack in uniqueness.

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