Blind Pilot's first album since 2011's "We Are The Tide," does not disappoint. "And Then Like Lions" is a mature, well-constructed album that takes the listener on a journey from sadly nostalgic to quietly optimistic.
The indie-folk band from Portland, Ore. sets the tone for its somber but hopeful album with the lovely "Umpqua Rushing," which is subtly heartbreaking and describes the feeling of missing somebody, but trying not to. The song immediately draws you in with this heartbreak and sets the mood, not with dramatic lyrics and music, but something more quiet and heavy.
"Packed Powder" is a simple song that takes the listener through someone's journey to redefine himself through a series of odd jobs that don't quite live up to his expectations, so he moves on, motivated, excited to move onto the next thing. "Don't want to wait and miss my turn," he sings.
"Don't Doubt" also continues on this hopeful track, with lyrics like "don't you just take the dark way out" and "everybody's seen some winter." Ending on the most optimistic note, title track "Like Lions" is soft and majestic. It's the light at the end of a mostly dark album.
"And Then Like Lions" is a beautiful, thoughtful collection of music, the perfect type of music to listen to on a long road trip, when you're getting tired and dusk hits. It's not in-your-face or melodramatic. Blind Pilot accomplishes a particular mood and a particular journey through careful, simple, thoughtful lyrics and music.