A Picture Made are an obscure midwest outfit who have been around since the 80s and gained some attention playing alongside The Replacements and The Call while releasing a well-received EP many moons ago. They are adept at alt-rock, indie-rock, and Americana ideas and mesh all three with alluring vocal harmonies on Heal.
A listen where each song brings new surprises, “God Loves A Hell Of A Man” is jangly alt-rocker with strong singing and flowing guitar work, while “Come To Me” offers a sparse love song with warm guitars in an introspective setting. Elsewhere, “Boxes On The Floor” recruits a hypnotic quality for a hushed folk-rock and Americana influenced moment, and with 3 tracks containing the word heal, there’s certainly a calming, meditative aspect to the listen, especially on the slow burning, lo-fi “Heal Me”. Louder, fuller moments certainly are present on the vibrant , anthemic “Heal You”, as well as the pop-rock spirited “Baby Boom Boom” and one of the album’s best, “When You Get Down”, is a shuffling roots rocker with bite.
Though A Picture Made have been around for over 3 decades, just an EP in 88 and a single in 86 comprise their catalog before this debut album. Thankfully, their formula is timeless, and seems just as relevant today as it did 30 years ago, and fans of Husker Du, R.E.M., The Jayhawks or even Westerberg’s solo work will be enamored with this carefully crafted affair.