From its opening four minutes – Michael Holt’s acapella narrative of his life’s loves from childhood to the present – The Dawn Chorus is clearly a storytelling album. A veteran musician whose musical past includes time in the cult band The Mommyheads, Holt’s album draws on his more than 20 years of songwriting experience to create a 15-track expression of love to the world. While the melodies are anchored by Holt’s lively piano, The Kids play with more instruments than an elementary school music class – tom toms, glockenspiel, triangles, steel drums, and a guiro all make an appearance. The sound is a good compliment for The Dawn Chorus’ all-ages messages of care for yourself, other people, and nature. Tracks like An Animal Invitation, which is narrated by animals, and The Ballad of Isaac and Jyllian, a new take on the story of Jack and Jill, make the most of the band’s cute and quirky style.