Album Review: Lee Gotvik – Rest My Heart

Fans of creative folk music will find a lot to like in this new album from Lee Gotvik. The first time I heard a track from Gotvik, I instinctively said, “oh this is good.” That spirit continued to influence my listening of the album. This is an artful work of folk songwriting that we’re happy to support. Let’s dig into it here.

The opening track “If I could” does a nice job of utilizing the lead vocal with a pure, engaging style. The electric guitar provides a good melodic basis for the track. The rhythm moves the track along while some of the accompanying instruments depict a bit of a mysterious mood. It’s a good track to get the album started.

“Things we do for love” has an upbeat rhythm to it and some blues influenced rock guitars. It shows off Gotvik’s attitude-laden vocal style on this one. With a bit more grittiness than other songs on the album, there’s an almost pop country style to the vocal style. The lyrical message encourages listeners to contemplate the costs of love.

“Friend” has a calm energy about it, sure to pull in a lot of the acoustic fans. The vocal on this one has an intimate quality to it, which I really appreciate. It might be the best vocal performance on the whole album. The bluesy overtones combine nicely with an intimacy that really works well here.

The following “Grace” has a bit of a darker vibe to it. The vocal harmonies on this one give it a bit more of a Civil Wars type of style. That’s intended as incredibly high praise for a folk song. The “now I’m free, finally” lyrical sentiment give what the listener needs to know about this story. If you’ve ever found yourself “newly free,” you will relate to the juxtaposition of heavy and light in this track.

“Rest my heart” reminds me a bit of artists like Sheryl Crow. It combines elements of pop and country storytelling to make for a strong performance. It honestly has that “big arena” style to it that sounds like it could have thousands of people singing along to the soaring chorus. It contrasts nicely with the following, “I rather not,” a song with a mystical vibe to it. The chord choices are a lot more mysterious, moving away from standard pop into more of a jazzy mood. It’s sure to appeal to the more artful fans looking for something off the beaten path.

“Lonely child” is the song that I heard from this album that initially caught my attention. I was happy to hear such an attitude-filled track that captured more of that Sheryl Crow vibe with a bit more sauce to it in some places. It’s a song with an almost poetic character in the lyrics, all captured with a solid vocal performance that reflects the uncertainty and loneliness of the track.

One of my favorite tracks on the album brings me home with “Loved you once.” It’s got a relatively simple acoustic composition and sincere vocal. While other songs might have more of Gotvik’s soaring vocal style, this one pulls the listener into the intimacy of a “round the fire” acoustic piece. When the rest of the band enters, there’s a depth added to the track that helps to further accentuate the emotional heaviness of the song. If you’ve ever experienced the end of a relationship that was once vibrant, this song will certainly relate.

All told, this is a solid folk and country-flavored album. There are elements of blues, jazz, and pop throughout to keep it interesting. I think fans of folk and Americana music will find a lot to like from Lee Gotvik’s new music. The lead vocal is my favorite consistent character on the album and the songwriting is all enjoyable. I think readers of ETTG will find a lot to like with this one.

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