Few people have managed to become quite so celebrated worldwide, quite as quietly as Jose Gonzalez has. Local Valley, his long awaited fourth album, serves as a relieving reminder that you dont have to be loud to be heard.
Since his debut single Crosses back in 2003, both he and his music have remained dependably quiet and unassuming. Local Valley calmly exhibits his singular ability to communicate with such modesty and power.
Beginning with the sun-dappled El Invento, the first song hes recorded in Spanish (the native tongue of his Argentinian heritage), and ending with the intimate yet rhapsodic Honey Honey. Along the way it engages in his signature melodic and metrical hypnotism, showcasing his remarkable fingerpicking skills, while theres further evidence of his love for music from around the world (he references an inspiring jam session in Gothenburg with Niger artist Bombino) and for the first time, the introduction of a drum machine on a few songs, further widening José´s musical spectrum.
The record, full of his trademark bittersweet pastoralism, includes what Gonzalez considers my most accomplished songs to date. While continuing his tradition of reinterpreting songs by other artists, with Line Of Fire' he picks one written for Junip, the band he formed with friends in 1998. That the original version has now been streamed some 60 million times suggest it, like other songs hes covered, is now part of the songwriting canon.