Without exactly knowing who he is, you’ve doubtlessly seen Vancouver multi-instrumentalist Bradley Ferguson in a wide variety of bands in anywhere from 100-person, standing-room-only venues to thousand-person seaters. Hunting began as his bedroom project before pulling together a who’s who of fellow musicians to help form the band’s sound. Contributors include Paul Rigby (Neko Case, A.C. Newman), drummer/co-producer John Raham (The Be Good Tanyas, Kelly Joe Phelps), Jessica Yliruusi and violinist Jesse Zubot (Dan Mangan, STARS, Fond of Tigers). Further influence came from Ryan Guldemond (Mother Mother), Dustin Bentall, bassist Darren Parris (Marcy’s Playground, Frazey Ford, Daniel Powter) and banjoist/pedal steel player John Ellis (Jeremy Fisher, Ridley Bent).

With Ferguson at the helm, Hunting coalesces into a formidable alt-folk act. While it may be that bands of that ilk may be a dime a dozen these days, Hunting stands out in its smirking optimism in light of the current state of sad affairs. Nowhere is this more apparent than on “Everything Will Be Okay,” where the punches-the-wall frustrations of the verses are balanced out with the comforting embrace of the chorus. If you happily subscribe to sad-bastard music, Hunting is your band.

By Spencer Brown

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