Formed in 2007, The Lost Cartographers are a Chicago-based band that has so far released one full-length album, Walk On. On this release, the quintet displays a showcase of Americana highlights that has been matched by only a small list of new and upcoming artists over the past few years.
The album features a delicate blend of both upbeat country-pop tracks, such as the title track "Walk On" and "Golden Record", as well as slower ballads. On the whole, these songs draw memories of a female-fronted Wilco circa A.M., combined with the electric organ the band has featured particularly in their most recent work. Overall, the timbre of Lost Cartographers combines both the old and new of Wilco's alt-country, folk, and Americana influences.
What stands out most on this record is not the Americana feel itself, however good that may be. Instead, lead vocalist Gabrielle Schafer shines through at all points, as her sound falls somewhere between the vocal essence of Natalie Merchant combined with a slight country-twang, reminiscent of Jenny Lewis. Schafer particularly carries the Lost Cartographers on their slower renditions. In particular, her presence transforms tracks such as "Killing Time in Nashville" and "Hudson River Teenage Blues" into works of beauty.
Make sure to check out the tracks below, "Walk On" and "Hudson River Teenage Blues" to see both sides the Lost Cartographers, and see for yourself why this band deserves more attention throughout the Americana music scene.