"...an intimate and attentive sound in the lineage of Jason Molina and David Bazan... pushing beyond the melancholic surface so common to indie rock, looking instead to explore the deep possibilities beneath." - Various Small Flames
The album’s title, "Convinced Friend," comes from the Quaker term for conversion. The songs all center on this process of becoming 'convinced'—of weighing the evidence and committing to a way, a person, or a life, with a clear look at the uncertainties that remain. For Wilson, this means coming to terms with the fact that life’s limitations, whether inherited or chosen, are not objects for regret but rather the frame that gives our lives meaning.
Wilson connected with Casey Belisle (Nova One, Burr) to flesh out the songs as a band, and then headed to Big Nice Studio, a converted textile mill in Lincoln, RI, to record them. Bradford Krieger (Horse Jumper of Love, Ian Sweet) served as producer over the course of quick and collaborative sessions, in which the three musicians took the long-still bones of songs and gave them depth and heft, recovering the joy of musical community Wilson had been missing in the writing process.
From the motorik pulse of album opener White Collar dissecting the alienation of modern work and wellness, to the dusky waltz of Safeway addressing lingering questions of long-term commitment, to the pensive and layered arrangements in Open Bloom and When I Go, the album incorporates a wide swath of dynamics centered on lush guitar work and a clear lyrical voice and resolve.
This debut release takes a close look at the fissures between the lives we imagined and the ones we live. The songs, taken individually and as a whole, cohere into a clear-eyed and quietly hopeful work; a steady prod at a heavy mind, intent on cracking it open.