2010’s Oh Thunder presents listeners with more previously unheard sides of Eleanor Murray, but in a way that is more conceptual than on the previous year’s EP. Released on Bicycle Records and recorded by Olympia go-to producer, Bob Schwenkler (Seapony, Explode Into Colors, Jeremy Jay), Oh Thunder’s tone gets set immediately on its opening track, “Come Alive.” The bright wind chimes that open the song, by the end, descend into a foreboding refrain of winter’s fires, setting up the push and pull that defines the album. Tonally and thematically, the album makes good on the storm predicted in its title. The song arrangement recalls the way nature’s chaos can have its moments of quiet, how the brightest skies can immediately follow the darkest. The ominous march of “Scream,” the hauntingly sparse waltz in “Trails of Star,” the opposing forces of “Hush (Smash),” and the sharp changes in “Street to Ride,” are all strikingly new styles that bear little resemblance to material from earlier albums.
“The tremelo timber of her voice could easily kick start any campfire with a few chords. The film visual are burning embers each embodying a thought or feeling…One of the stand-out tracks word-wise is “When A Heart Becomes A Heart” in the tradition of folk addressing these feelings. Creating a definition to song about crying and honesty. Another is a track called “Scream” which is photographically introspective and has a great example of her vocal detail abilities caring the sentiment around in voice while you look at her under a photo loop. This is really quite good so if you if you are into something mellowliciously Nico check her out.” -Review Stalker
The band for Oh Thunder includes Pamela Margon on violin, Austin Cooper on drums, Joe Capoccia on bass, Andrew Dorsett on wurlitzer and organ, Ben Hargett with guitar drones on “careful broken”, Ben Kamen on electric guitar on “careful broken”, and Bob Schwenkler with various percussion and bass. Oh Thunder was recorded by Bob Schwenkler at the Dub Narcotic Studio in Olympia, WA.