Innocence Mission, Small Planes

Mike McGonigal

By Mike McGonigal

on 04.22.11 in Reviews
The ideal soundtrack to the Sunday drive after church.

A collection of previously unreleased songs, this 2001 release of beautiful Christian-influenced ballads sounds remarkably cohesive and of-a-piece. The Innocence Mission is remarkable for the subtlety of their tunes, the melodic and sing-songy nature of the guitar playing (which brings to mind a jazzier Dean Wareham) and Karen Peris 'fragile, high-pitched voice (which brings to mind no one else, really.) As with Ida, Ten Thousand Maniacs and Kristin Hersh, the music is backgrounded to place more emphasis on the vocals, but somehow the listener winds up paying more attention to the moody and ethereal Americana the more it melts away. Powerful, hypnotic and understated, this is the ideal soundtrack to that Sunday drive after church.