Label: Bella Union Release date: 14/09/09 Website: http://www.myspace.com/jtillman Buy: Ama J. Tillman (the J's for Joshua if you're wondering) had been busy pre-Fleet Foxes with some fairly low-key releases, and by some I mean a whole seven. His eighth is Year In The Kingdom and his first since joining Fleet Foxes to drum and generally harmonise. Year In The Kingdom is vividly wintery, conjuring up visions of snowy landscapes dotted with cabins through it's sparse textures. Beards and check shirts come as standard. The harmonies are as nailed on as you'd expect, delicately hushed matching the odd lone violin to the note. The multiple harmonies are used sparingly though, possibly a conscious attempt to avoid it becoming a Fleet Foxes carbon copy. The pace is much slower than his recent band outing, pensively meandering more than anything else. 'Crosswinds' drifts achingly to it's “We'll find each other where we promised” end, forlorn and longing. The title track opens with an uncomfortable sounding melody, but it seeds itself into your mind and becomes instantly familiar. The whole album feels like an outpouring of emotion, poetic but often indecipherable. It's all very cathartic and while it's an album of obvious beauty, there's something that keeps you distanced from putting your all into it. There are moments that really captivate, but they're outweighed by the many that just fade on past. Rating: 6/10