Thursday, October 1, 2015

Fourplay : Gavin Chappell-Bates , 32 Below , Scott A.F , My Politic

Gavin Chappell-Bates - We are the ones (2015) Gazing at the life as a pop star
I don´t know much about Cambridge in England more than it´s a famous university city and the hometown of new British artist Gavin Chappell-Bates.
I get the feeling he really would like to be a member of Manic Street Preachers if only for one day, when I listen to his new 4 track EP "We are the ones".
Gavin released his debut EP "Black holes" in February this year but this new one is the first release I get to hear from this young man who is working on his debut LP to be released in 2016.
So here is a tip along the way, I like his songwriting but he should get in touch with a vocal coach because he is struggling to keep his singing pitch steady.
The lead track "We are the ones" is a nice indie pop/Brit rock song that grows on me for each time I hear it, truly the best song on this EP.
Gavin sings "I wanna be back in ´95" on the 2nd track "95", he takes a walk down memory lane on the year when songs like "Wonderwall" by Oasis, "I´ll be there for you" by The Rembrandts and "Wake up Boo" by The Boo Radleys ruled the British charts.

32 Below - Every little thing about you (2014) These guys are so American
Although the 1996 film Fargo by Ethan and Joel Coen wasn´t filmed on location in or near Fargo, North Dakota. It made the the town more famous.
It´s also the hometown for country rockers 32 Below, a band that has since been around for a decade with 5 albums in their luggage.
So put on your cowboy hat and dance because if you don´t dance, you will miss out on all the fun when 32 Below plays where the music goes in the same vein as Dierks Bentley, Keith Urban and DarkHorse.
I enjoy the warm production on their latest effort "Every little thing about you" and really like the album´s lead track "You, me and the whiskey" plus the rocker "Raise it up".
But the reggae song "What did we do last night" feels rather misplaced here and some songs do soundalike or is it that my hard rocking ears ain´t used to this country pop / rock? Could be.
Not what I usually listen to but overall a good album.

Scott A.F - Under your skin (2015) A rough diamond that needs to be refined and processed
It´s easy and cheap to record music today, you only need a computer, a music software product and the instruments needed.
The downside is that without the right audio engineering skills, the production most often ends up sounding like a low budget recording.
Scott A.F from Oklahoma is a talented songwriter and singer but the production on his debut EP "Under your skin" sounds more like a demo than a finished studio product, the songs are good but they just doesn´t sound big enough.
I can´t stop to think what a famous record producer like Max Martin could do with "So cold", now talk about a track with hit potential but still needs a major facelift.
Scott A.F is on the right track with this blend of R&B and electronica that will appeal to fans of Gavin DeGraw, Maroon 5 and Justin Timberlake.
He just needs a little push on the way.

My Politic - Anchor (2015) More fuel for your campfire songs
The Amish people live a simple life, far away from modern technology. In their community, it all comes down to the most basic needs in life. Like stepping back to the 19th century.
Listening to the Nashville based trio My Politic´s 6th album "Anchor" is pretty much the same thing, these guys only need an acoustic guitar, a banjo and the voice you carry.
The music feels sincere and very organic, much welcome in this age of computerized pop and autotune vocals.
When I hear songs like "Ways to love" and "Civil war song", it´s as close to escapism from your daily routines you can get.
I expect to find albums with Neil Young, Bob Dylan and Paul Simon in their record collections. Well, I think it´s a good foundation to have when you´re making an album in the Americana / folkrock genre.

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