The self-titled debut album from Vancouver-born Bradley Ferguson’s new band, Hunting, takes somber indie-folk music and adds electronic accents to create a sound that is eerie and unnatural. Ferguson’s vocals are faded out behind the music like an ethereal, ghostly presence. The piano and violin sections add to the mesmerizing feeling of the album. The synth music and drum beats add another layer of depth, providing some much needed bass to harmonize the melody and give substance to the music. Overall the collection has a sad and reflective tone; however, there are more energetic sections dominated by synth rhythms or banjo solos, which somewhat break the crushingly dark tone of the album.
Early on in the album, “Addi,” breaks the solemn tone created by the previous songs, with a startling shift to a heavy synth and bass rhythm combined with steady vocals which carry the energy of the song. There are some small breaks in the driving bass, filled by airy flute and piano instrumentals.
“Antony” brings in new elements to the album with melodic piano and violin harmony early on which slowly fades into more forceful percussion and guitar reverb as if the listener is being sucked into a nightmare. The album ends with “Lonely Happy,” which has deep, slow guitar harmonies accented with hushed vocals that give the impression of a sorrowful farewell.
Ferguson demonstrates his talent as a songwriter in Hunting. However, the album seems to lack any coherent identity aside from being emotional and sad. Each song has its merits and unique character, but when taken together as a whole there is no consistency, just a continued atmosphere. The dark and dreamy mood given off by the album leaves you unsettled and wanting more substance from the music.