There are certain artists that I could sit and listen to all day. Denison Witmer is one of them. Witmer’s the kind of artist you buy on vinyl, put on your record player and listen to for hours while you read and drink wine. Witmer live is a similar experience. You just sit quietly with your drink in hand and enjoy yourself as Witmer serenades you with lullabies all night.
Dension’s new self-titled record is his most laid back record since 2002’s Philadelphia Songs (my personal favorite). It’s a simpler record than Witmer’s last couple of records. Not that Denison’s ever released something crazy or gone way off script, but long time fans will hear his new record and understand what I’m talking about.
Ambient piano giving way to Witmer’s familiar finger picking on the acoustic guitar open up Born Without Words before Witmer’s voice, drenched in reverb comes. It’s a beautiful song about being yourself and not comparing yourself to those around you. Keep Moving Brother, Keep Moving Sister continues in the same vain. The song is a little more groove based (a little) but lyrically the song is about moving forward and becoming what you’re supposed to be. The self-titled nature of the record is this brilliant play on words, as lyrically Witmer is addressing the issue of being one’s self and moving forward.
Take Yourself Seriously closes the record. It’s a song inspired by Rainer Maria Rilke’s Letters To A Young Poet. Rilke is my favorite poet and Witmer does him justice. The song is beautiful with a hint of whimsy. A fantastic album closer.
In my opinion, this is Witmer’s best record since Philadelphia Songs. Beautifully crafted indie folk songs with a theme of identity and being who you were created to be. An absolutely delightful listen.