On November 11, 2016, indie queen Kristin Hersh released her ninth studio album, ‘Wyatt at the Coyote Palace.’ The album came with a book as she has done twice before. Then earlier this year, Atlanta-based label Happy Happy Birthday to Me released ‘Wyatt at the Coyote Palace’ on vinyl. Now here we are with a copy in our mitts.
Upon its initial release, it took a while to get into ‘Wyatt at the Coyote Palace’ because it hit close to home with its underlying theme of death, and at 24 songs, Hersh gives the listener a lot to digest. The album is made up of true stories from Hersh’s life and for anyone who knows her music, Hersh’s loveable quirky sense of humor plays a strong part in the songwriting. She is a true poet with her words. Lyrically enriching, the songs on ‘Wyatt at the Coyote Palace’ breathe like tiny novellas you can’t help but to fall in love with. Even through the dark times, there is light, and through the hard times comes survival. Plus, she sings about the ocean and sharks, so that’s cool too.
Hersh flexes her musical muscles here, not only as a gifted songwriter but also as a musician. She’s always colored outside the lines with her guitar playing, and in my humble opinion, she is one of the most underrated guitar players there is. However, on this album she does more than color outside the lines—she throws caution to the wind and paints with a god damn big canvas of bright, moody colors, which suck you into the warm ocean water she sings about or the cold dark corners in which depression hides. To emphasize her thoughts, Hersh went as far as creating her own instruments and beat, pounded, and plucked on anything which would resonate. This gives the songs a raw feeling, as if she is in your room telling stories while strumming a beat up old guitar.
‘Wyatt at the Coyote Palace’ is more than a music album and it sounds incredibly warm on this vinyl version. Though there is not a book like with the CD, there are plenty of liner notes and artistic vinyl sleeves for you to admire. But let’s be honest, you will be hanging on to every note, every lyric Hersh is laying down on these songs, like a love letter from a secret admirer.