José González - 'Local Valley'

7/10

Since first breaking through with his incredible debut album 'Veneer' back in 2003, Swedish singer and songwriter José González has been a seldom seen addition to the folk-pop scene ever since. While that initial effort was undoubtably one of the most impactful records of the noughties, the frontman has taken a rare relaxed approach to his output ever since, usually waiting several years before reemerging. But after the year we have all had, now feels like a pretty good time for his sweeping tones as he drops his fourth full-length 'Local Valley', a release that is more of the same of what we love him for.

José González has always been a focused and unwavering name throughout the last eighteen years. While many in his ilk have looked to broaden their horizons and try something different from time to time, he has been honing his distinct style to create more warming and lofty compositions that are unmistakably his own. Another fresh batch of sweet and seductive melodies that use little more than an acoustic guitar and his own transportive vocals, 'Local Valley' holds firm to his chosen formula and delivers a much-needed respite from all the troubles of the outside world.

Although it feels like more of the same from start to finish, 'Local Valley' still has this transcendent vibe to it, allowing us to get swept up within his smooth and ethereal prose. It may be quite a while before we hear José González again after this, so best to get your fill now and forget your troubles just for a while.

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