Arbouretum — Let It All In (March 20, 2020)US flag           Arbouretum — Let It All In (March 20, 2020) Arbouretum — Let It All In (March 20, 2020)•⊆ •  Arbouretum, postavený kolem mistrovského psaní skladeb a bandleadera, kytaristy a zpěváka kapely Dave Heumanna, strávil roky 2000 a 2010 pomalu trikováním vynikajících alb mírně kosmického líně písničkářského rocku. Postupem času se kapela přikláněla k britskému folkovému vlivu a umístila Heumannovy vyprávěné písně vtíravými, tradicí informovanými a diktovanými melodiemi. Deváté album Let It All In nachází kapelu v té nejjasnější artikulaci jejich zvuku, která kdy pohltila hranice mezi woodsy folkem, rural psychedelií a experimentálním převzetím roots rocku. Co vyzvednu? Vynikající muzikantství, obratnou produkci a Heumannovu lyrickou úvahu o univerzálních i osobních tématech. Ty vytvářejí zážitek z poslechu, že mu téměř zobu rovnou z ruky, jak je to podmanivé. Arbouretum přichází tak jemňoulince, jako zvlněný potok, nikdy nespatřen v plné moci, dokud písně tiše nevyrostou ze stojatých vod na vrcholek hřebenů vln. Co mne pohladilo úplně snad nejvíce, je téměř dokonalý Camelovský zvuk Dave Balloua (křídlovka) a Matthewa Pierce (klávesy, flétny). Křídlovka se tradičně používala v armádě jako signální nástroj, díky svému jemnému tónu se používá převážně jako melodický nástroj, zvláště v dechových, vojenských a jazzových orchestrech. Hlavním problémem tohoto alba je to, že se příliš pevně drží v klidu uprostřed tempa. Nejsou tam žádná velké trháky, tedy kytarová sóla a málo instrumentálních crescend. Jedna velká výjimka přichází v předposlední skladbě „Let It All In“ rozšířeným zoomem, drajvem a elektrifikovaným upírem, který s naléhavostí podtrhuje Heumannovy serpentinové kytarové figury. Střih trvá téměř 12 minut, ale je to nejrychlejších 12 minut na albu. Klidné rozjímání je v moderování v rádiích samozřejmě dobrá věc, ale k té, na kterou se stejně nakonec vrátíte, je sedmá skladba sedm, protože je to nutkjící k houpavě rockovému tanci.
•⊆ •  Alternative band that combined the sludgy jams of stoner rock with melancholy folk. 
Formed: 2002 in Baltimore, MD
Location: Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.
Recorded at: Wrightway Studios
Album release: March 20, 2020
Recording Location: WrightWay Studios
Record Label:  Thrill Jockey
Duration:     45:37
01. How Deep It Goes   6:32
02.  A Prism In Reverse   3:57
03. No Sanctuary Blues   5:34
04. Night Theme   2:17
05. Headwaters II   5:35
06. Buffeted By Wind   4:39
07. Let It All In   11:48
08. High Water Song   5:15
Written by:
•⊆ Arbouretum / Dave Heumann     1, 2, 3, 6, 8
⊇• Dave Heumann / Rob Wilson     5 
•⊆ Arbouretum / Dave Heumann / Rob Wilson     4, 7
•⊆ Corey Allender   Guitar (Bass)
⊇•  Arbouretum   Composer
•⊆ Dave Ballou   Flugelhorn, Trumpet
⊇•  Dave Bergander   Drums, Percussion
•⊆ Brian Carey   Drums
⊇•  Daniel Castrejon   Layout
•⊆ Hans Chew   Piano
⊇•  Dave Heumann   Composer, Guitar, Vocals
•⊆ Mike Kuhl   Percussion
⊇•  Mike Lowry   Percussion
•⊆ Dave McAleer   Cover Art
⊇•  Matthew Pierce   Keyboards, Woodwind
•⊆ Sarah Register   Mastering
⊇•  Walker Teret   Guitar (Acoustic)
•⊆ Rob Wilson   Composer
⊇•  Steve Wright   Engineer, Mixing
AllMusic Review by Fred Thomas; Score: ★★★★ 
•⊆⊇•   Built around the masterful songwriting and commanding vocals of bandleader Dave Heumann, Arbouretum spent the 2000s and 2010s slowly trickling out excellent albums of slightly cosmic folk~rock. As time went on, the band leaned into a British folk influence, lacing Heumann’s narrative songs with haunting traditionally informed melodies. Ninth album Let It All In finds the band at the clearest articulation of their sound ever, blurring the boundary lines between woodsy folk, rural psychedelia, and an experimental take on roots rock. “No Sanctuary Blues” finds Arbouretum at the crossroads of all of their varied impulses. Solid rhythm section playing shifts between bar room rock and sprawling drone while Heumann steps away from delivering spirited vocals only to offer Richard Thompson~grade guitar soloing. The moments of cosmic space~out are highlighted by keyboardist Matthew Pierce’s unobtrusive synth textures. The following instrumental track “Night Theme” also showcases Pierce’s synth playing, contrasting mellow folk~rock riffing with detuned alien keyboard tones. The barreling Krautrock beat that drives the title track leaves plenty of space for Heumann’s guitar tangents and lyrics exploring the differences between mass consciousness and an internal world. The song pushes forward for nearly 12 minutes, engaging and tense for the entire time. It’s a boiling point for an album made up of various understated moods. Much of Let It All In tends towards introverted performances, from the metered melancholy of “Headwaters II” to the drifting, sleepy honky tonk airs of closer “High Water Song.” Mellow songs like these, both steeped in a Grateful Dead influence, offer soft counterpoint to the album’s more fiery performances. Excellent musicianship, deft production, and Heumann’s lyrical ponderance of both universal and personal themes all make for a listening experience as offhand as it is captivating. Arbouretum comes on as gentle as a rolling creek, never letting on the full range of their powers until the songs have silently grown from still waters to cresting waves. Metro Gallery, Baltimore, MD © Matt Condon (below)
Pitchfork, album Coming Out of the Fog: 
•⊆⊇•   Arbouretum’s mystic folk~rock collapses a continuum of 20th century music into decidedly classic song structures. English folk, country blues, Americana and 70s psychedelia all serve as touchpoints in their singular and distinctive sound. The Baltimore~based band have perfected the craft of storytelling using the delicate interplay of melodies and prosaic lyrics to tell vivid stories that engage the listener and transport them the way an immersive novel would. Let It All In stands as their most accomplished and evocative album to date. Guitarist and vocalist Dave Heumann’s melodies and solos still remain a central focus bolstered by the hypnotic rhythms of bassist Corey Allender and drummer Brian Carey and enhanced by Matthew Pierce’s substantial yet understated keyboard figures. Each song is a vivid scene or tale; meticulously detailed and crafted, transporting the listener to another world and time.
•⊆⊇•   Recorded at Wrightway Studios with Steve Wright, the record’s elaborate, delicate and interlocking melodies expand with improvisation as in the relentless forward~motion of title track “Let In All In”, or the slow cosmic churn of “No Sanctuary Blues”. Let It All In features two drummers on nearly every track. David Bergander worked with long~time core member Carey to develop complementary parts, blended together as if they were a single player rather than two separate instrumentalists. New sounds are nowhere more evident than on “High Water Song”. With its raucous honky~tonk piano laid down by Hans Chew and walls of layered saxophone, trumpet and flugelhorn played by Dave Ballou and Matthew Pierce, it is a striking new addition to their catalog of songs.
•⊆⊇•  Heumann’s deep sense of spirituality and command of storytelling through myth and metaphor resonates through Arbouretum’s music. Let It All In invokes nature as a backdrop for exploring humanity’s relationship to time, history, and the present socio~political climate, often highlighting water as a ubiquitous if often unconscious presence in our lives. It acts as a subtle connecting thread through each piece’s imagined landscapes, as well as taking on a symbol for change and spirit. The “black and deepest crimson” of sunrise over the Atlantic ocean on “How Deep It Goes” reflects on current political turmoil and the obfuscation of truth. “High Water Song” follows a narrator whose home is washed away by the effects of climate change and struggles to integrate into a new homeland. Title track “Let It All In” acts as a thematic thesis to the album, musing on both the pitfalls and benefits of letting the outside world into one’s inner life.
•⊆⊇•   Let It All In is as instantly arresting as it is deeply reflective, with layers of sound and metaphor for the listener to unravel and interpret in their own way. It is a beautiful album that lives in and reflects the present moment while sounding as if it were forged in another era. The group has always centered around Heumann’s remarkable voice and songwriting. His skill as a vocalist and guitar player have led to playing with artists such as Cass McCombs, Will Oldham, and many others. Heumann’s songs are transportive and decidedly album~oriented, and Let It All In is an invitation to jump into an album rich with timeless elegance. The rarity of their live shows and the otherworldliness of their music have made Arbouretum a cultish band, a treasure for those that discover their albums. Their profound music endures and rewards fans both old and new. Arbouretum has added to their catalog another exceptional work that will weather changing fashions and reward those who explore their entirely unique world. •⊆⊇•