The Welcome Wagon – Precious Remedies . . .
Mostly earnest & relaxed odes to the One. I think I hear the cool vox of Mr. Stevens here and there. Hey, its Easter and Passover, so lift up your voice and celebrate; we are free at last and those enslavers are nowhere to be found! This music has some of the same instrumental warmth of Sufjan, yet not derivative. Embrace your new neighborhood and look! the welcome wagon is politely knocking on your door. Let them in and enjoy the warmth of their hospitality and love. Yes, you are finally home.
Those who enjoyed the Welcome Wagon’s debut album will notice their distinct sound again here on “Precious Remedies Against Satan‘s Devices“ – loose, jangly, comfortable, a gathering of friends making music together. It’s at times jaunty and toe-tapping, at others quietly contemplative, an alt-folk gem that sounds very much like it comes out of the Asthmatic Kitty camp. But while the first album was recorded over the course of eight years in various venues, this one was done in five days at the library of an old rectory in Brooklyn. And while recording artist and Asthmatic Kitty co-owner Sufjan Stevens produced WW’s first album, he’s less noticeable on this collection, produced by Alexander Foote, who also plays guitars, organ, autoharp, percussion, and some piano. (Stevens does play banjo and piano and sings in the choir on several songs here.)
Vito says his songwriting is informed by his work as senior pastor at Resurrection Presbyterian Church in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood. “A pastor is supposed to care for people, to help them to love God, to engage with their lives and their joys and their sorrows,” he says. “I’m only interested in writing music that will speak to that. I’m writing as a pastor, wanting these songs to speak God’s truth into those situations.”