It’s no question that Anthony Green is a prolific musical artist. Between the three active bands he is a part of and the one inactive, he has written over 10 albums and counting. On “Pixie Queen,” his latest solo effort, he said that he wanted to take his time and write an album that would capture the essence of a bonfire. That was the goal he had in mind. After I listened through this album many times, it is clear he succeeded.
Green’s main strength on this record is the sincerity of the lyrics. He has gone on record to talk about his suicidal downfall a few years back, which inspired the tracks “East Coast Winters” and “I’m Sorry for Everything I’ve Ever Done.” While the premise of these songs might bring forth a dark emotional state, the beauty of the melodies and simplicity of the piano and guitars work extremely well. On the brighter side of things, “Will It Be” tells the tale of Green’s determination to provide for his three sons and the things he wants to do in order to give them a good life. “Pixie Queen,” the title track and closer of the album, is blooming with happy feelings as Green sings about his wife and how lucky he is to have her. Both of these family-centered tracks are a constant theme in much of Green’s music and work particularly well here.
As mentioned before, much of the instrumentation on the album is comprised of simple guitar and drum couplings with the occasional piano. Using these instruments helps in creating the bonfire feeling Green set out for. It never feels as though the production of the songs was overly implemented. Even tracks such as “Reason to Stay,” where the instrumentation is more organized and deep, aren’t out of the picture when it comes to the acoustic, bare knuckle renditions. The lead single and opening track of the album “You’ll Be Fine” is one of the more well-rounded tracks present. The complexity of tempos and ranges come together to make a great mood-setting song for the album’s opener.
The track that works the best with the bonfire theme is “Cellar”, a creepy song that feeds off of a mysterious tonality. Green performs with nothing more than a guitar and his voice, giving off a feeling of autumn and dark nights. It’s a gorgeous track that embodies much of what the album is setting out to be. “Down on the Canal” comes in a close second in this regard, also boasting a darker theme. The quality that stands out here is the extremely high range Green uses in the chorus. It’s a staple he has grown to be known for, but this track pushes it to its peak.
“Pixie Queen” is an absolute success. There are no points on this record that fall flat from reaching their original goal, and that feat is extremely impressive. As veteraned of a musician as he is, one might expect Green to be losing some creative steam. “Pixie Queen” proves that notion incorrect and, if anything, reinforces Green’s writing ability as one of the best in this genre.