Natalie Spears' Debut Album "Hymn of Wild Things" Captures Colorado's Natural Beauty

Article Contributed by gratefulweb | Published on Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Natalie Spears' music is animated by the quiet awe of wild places. From her home in Colorado's Roaring Fork Valley, she immerses herself in the natural world, finding beauty and meaning in the language of birds, the patterns of migration, and the cosmic dance of nature. Her forthcoming album, Hymn of Wild Things, set to release on June 28, is a poignant collection of songs chronicling her experiences of wonder, loss, and metamorphosis.

The title track, "Hymn of Wild Things," is an autumnal evensong honoring the Sandhill Cranes as they migrate through the Rocky Mountains. Grounded by a hypnotic pulse created by sampling and manipulating field recordings of early morning cranes near her home, the track is a testament to Spears' deep connection with nature. "Orchard of Dreams" is a journey-song about transforming eternal self-doubt into fruits of hope, while "Risk It All" is a flirtatious 1930s jazz-inspired number about a Louisiana dance floor romance, featuring piano, bass, drums, and a trumpet section recorded in New Orleans.

The album is anchored by a song cycle about the loss of her father, which Spears sings with clarity and tenderness. "He Still Knows" is a reckoning with the onset of her dad's Alzheimer's, capturing the disorientation of memory loss with swirling reverse guitar hooks. "How Far" is a post-loss ode to the irrational things one would do to bring a loved one back to life, written during a later wave of grief. "To Know The Dark" sets a Wendell Berry poem to music, a song Spears has long sung in community, holding hands with both darkness and light as a candlelight at the end of a triptych of grief songs.

Produced and recorded by Juno-winning musician Jayme Stone, who also plays guitar, synths, samples, and programmed drums on the album, Hymn of Wild Things features collaborations with Christine Bougie (Bahamas), Pat Keen (Humbird), Andriu Yanovsky (Boogie Trio), Kevin Matthews (Gasoline Lollipops), and Eric Wiggs (Jake Leg).

Release Schedule:

  • May 17: "Hymn of Wild Things" (Single)
  • June 7: "He Still Knows" (Single)
  • June 28: Hymn of Wild Things (Album)


Colorado Tour Dates:

  • June 2: Coaldale Schoolhouse, Salida
  • June 7: TACAW, Carbondale
  • June 8: Paradise Theatre, Paonia
  • June 15: House Concert, Fort Collins
  • June 30: Sherbino Theater, Ridgeway
  • August 7: Grand Mesa Arts Center, Cedaredge
  • August 9: Freight Theatre, Leadville
  • August 10: House Concert, Westcliffe
  • August 11: Sundays at 6, Gunnison

Natalie Spears is best known for her work with fiddling singer Lizzy Plotkin. Their album, Just Over the Ridge, was one of Folk Alliance’s top ten charting albums of the year and reached number seven on Billboard’s bluegrass album chart. Spears' debut album offers a deep dive into the intimate corners of humanity and nature alike. Each song is a testament to her connection with the wild and her ability to translate that connection into moving, melodic stories.