Tyler Butler is a singer-songwriter from Edmonton, Canada, whose latest album Winter King is an hypnotizingly hypothermic selection of slow acoustic folk music. Released via Old Ugly Recording Company, Winter King explores the personal and social life in the long, dark Edmonton winter. Recorded in Butler’s apartment, he made little to no effort to remove the sounds of his apartment when the record was made. A great call as the sounds give the record life in an otherwise frigid, barren world outside.
Borrowing heavily from winter mythology, Winter King also possesss an extremely personal and intimate theme and feel in a spacious soundscape. Adding to the candid vibe is Butler’s wispy voice barely raising above a whisper and warming the cold air. You can just picture Butler huddling over his guitar as his breath escapes in trails of smoke as he sings.
The entire album is beautifully bleak and dark. It’s the kind of beauty found only on a private midnight stroll in the moonlit snow with only the icy wind upon your skin and the crystalline stars in a clear black sky.
Winter King is a perfect reflection of the songwriter and the environment in which it was recorded. It is the Great White North personified. Certainly one of the best albums I’ve heard thus far this year.