“Wings” is the first new song by Field Report, the Milwaukee band led by singer-songwriter Chris Porterfield. The band releases its new album, Marigolden, on October 7th on Partisan Records. The band’s sophomore release more than satisfies the longing we’ve had for more music after being so thoroughly blown away by their 2012 self-titled debut. This time around Field Reports adds more of the right rhythms, synths, flourishes of electronica and musical depth into their carefully executed “folk” rock songs. One listen to “Wings” is all you need to hear the direction Porterfield goes in, and the musical maturity is stunning. At the heart of Field Report’s songs are his voice – yearning, aching, compromised, hurt, yet optimistic – and his acoustic guitar. Like Jose Gonzalez’s Junip, who build their touched-by-electronica songs on the sound of a six string or a keyboard, “Wings” does in a similar manner. The song starts with a soft keyboard, builds in emotion with some intricate acoustic guitar playing, the click track and beats seemingly randomly kick in, and once established, the synths blend in and the song builds with suspense and tension. Porterfield is the master at the “simmer as boil.” He understands how to take a song just to the edge of capturing the emotion he wants with the music his band is performing. While Stereogum called the song “the closest Field Report has ever sounded to Radiohead,” the comparisons to a song like “Fragile” by Sting are more appropriate, in that Porterfield brings his unique storytelling craft and musical warmth into the mix, as well as his own sense of ambient “Radioheadness” on this new song.
Below, download “Wings.”