"A keeper...perfectly crafted, well-executed, and earnest in its intent... thoroughly enjoyable...emotionally pure, Lewis & Clarke has released one of the best of the year."
"Eight tracks of delicate beauty."
"The melodies are exquisite, as delivered by an impressive array of strings, percussion, and Rogai’s own direct, unforced vocals...This is a band that more than deserves its growing acclaim."
"Rogai has a gift for speaking plainly while tonguing poetry, and his meditations on life cycles and pastoral philosophy blossom and collapse with organic grace...Contributions from Man Man, Rachel's and Hella might draw people in to Holy Birth, but Rogai's cloudless crystalline vision will keep them."
"A profound work of earthy, orchestrated new-folk...raises the bar for both listeners and players...An expose of grace, beauty, peril, triumph, and the interconnectivity of all things. Meshing gorgeously hushed melodies and plucked guitars with baroque string arrangements and ethereal pulses and surges, Lewis & Clarke has crafted a transcendent work of epic proportions."
"The eight tracks here are protracted and whisper-quiet yet engaging, with a constant tug of sorrow that satisfies..Rogai exhales poignant lyrics and juggles elegant instrumentation."
"The music and lyrics are gorgeously rustic, spacious, somnolently elegant and entrenched in the woodsy surroundings that inspired them."
-PHILADELPHIA CITY PAPER
"A much quieter affair whose beauty lies in its intricacies...a mystifying and ultimately solid and thrilling album."
"Psychedelic in a halcyon sense, as moments expand and bring warmth to the listening experience. Rogai and company play with space here, a feat that yields results that range from warm undertones to grandiose exultation."
-CLEVELAND FREE TIMES
"Full of gentle drones of bowed cello..ripples of plucked harp strings...slow-motion cascades of horns and synths, and existential rhythms of tabla and trap-kit snare, all tied together in patient, sophisticated arrangements that highlight Rogai's spiritually inquisitive lyrics and quietly demonstrative vocals."
"Rogai and his collaborators have culled a set of melodies that achieve a haunting beauty...it is more than a collection of songs...each listen unearths a new layer...restrained aggression often apparent in classical symphonies but rarely accomplished in a pop music setting."
-LOST AT SEA
"Intriguing neo-folk classics that are bundled into meditative rhythms that boast an out-of-body experience...The title track will haunt your soul for an eternity; this is an album you simply must own."
"An absolutely stunning album."
"A deeply personal record, crafted with a subtle hand that lends to multiple new awakenings with each new listen...Rogai's centerpiece, 'Before it Breaks You,' takes to task combining the many strengths and mysterious hidden mazes of Holy Birth, into a ten-minute epic capable of producing both tears of remembrance and a third-eye vision, should the listener indulge enough in it's multiple folds. "
"The mystical side of (Lewis & Clarke) is heightening...thoughtful, lightly philosophical, exploratory folk with a rustic, natural-world mood."
- ERASING CLOUDS
"Blasts of Holy Birth is gorgeous. It's superbly articulated and ideally presented with an appropriate production whose highlights are warmth, delicacy, and prettiness...it's not only the mixture of instrumentation and the aplomb with which each instrument's part is in total harmony with the rest; it's the way all these players are presented to the audience, with each sonic character being an element of delicate beauty."
"Kaleidoscopic layering over sophisticated lines, the rosy folk songs within are tasteful, only bordering on sentimental, and graciously free of pretense...reverent, almost hymnal in quality."
"A record of struggle, doubt, and eventual resolution..pretty folk melody heads off into more unusual territory... rhythmic folk guitar patterns pacing a flickering flow of images"
"This is quite clearly a thinking man’s album by a thinking man’s band, but a thinking man who figures as much with his spirit as he does with his head."
Lou Rogai (Guitar, Voice, Double Bass, Tanpura, Synth)
Russell Higbee (Harp, Piano, Synth, Sarod)
Eve Miller (Cello)
Dave Ulrich (Drums, Banjo)
Dan Scholnick (Tablas)
Dan McKinney (Hammond A100, Synth)
Recorded by Dan McKinney at Dan's House
Mastered by Kim Rosen at West West Side
supported by 5 fans who also own “Blasts Of Holy Birth”
Hearing this was like discovering 70s Bob Dylan or London Calling for the first time. This music so respectfully derivative yet strikingly original and immediate, reaches a place left un-visited by every new Dylan, Springsteen, Beatle or Saviour-of-Rock since those comparisons began.
Daniel Romano is all of the above in spirit, but is entirely in the present. The Outfit are outstanding. Raw yet sophisticated, uncontrived yet knowing. This is one I'll keep coming back to. tideracer