The Hermit’s Spyglass is the fifth studio album from the mind of one of America’s truest notions of an artist, Ben Bedford. A true master of his craft, Bedford spends his time writing music, drawing or performing. And as you sit back and absorb the contents of his latest album The Hermit’s Spyglass you cannot help but be drawn in by the stunning passion with which his every note is brought to life.
The most astonishing thing about Bedford’s work is the rich and dramatic nature of it, there is something almost theatrical within it. With the songs he produces there are elements hidden within that make his work much less like music and more like poetry. This has not gone unnoticed in the music world with one reviewer commenting that if there was a musical equivalent for the Poet Laureate then Bedford would certainly be in the running. His words bring whole new scenarios to life as if he was painting before you in real time, taking you through the tales he has crafted with charming landscapes and tender actions.
There is something of an experience of a journey with Bedford’s latest masterpiece, as though the journey undertaken by the Hermit is a journey which you are taking yourself. You feel Bedford’s every word sinking in just below the skin and worming its way straight to your heart. Although his work often takes on a more poetic form there is also no distraction from the fact that Bedford is an extremely talented young musician. Alongside his beautiful verses you find the most beautiful and natural guitar melodies. As rich and warming as the sun, his dextrous fingers seem to dance across the strings like the light reflected on water. A constantly moving and versatile nature filters through his work giving it a restless and undulating feeling that matches the constant wanderings of Bedford’s hermit.
With a soft and enigmatic voice, Bedford overlays his work with completely impassioned and invigorated storytelling that creates whole new worlds for his listeners. His versatile writing skills and phenomenal ability to carefully pair off his work with charmed juxtapositions of sound has made him one of the most elegant and beautiful performers within the music scene today.
Review by Joe Knipe