12 September 2014

Ross Palmer - Reassurance EP review

Ross Palmer is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, engineer/producer and music blogger, living in a south-east London. On his 30th birthday his heart failed and he was told he would be physically impaired for the rest of his life and may need a transplant. Instead, over the next year he got better, and decided to make the most of his second chance. He writes songs; performs, records and mixes them himself; plays drums for Sumner; records and produces artists including Yo Zushi and James McKean; blogs at Songs from So Deep; supports Tottenham Hotspur; and drinks black coffee. 

Okay. So I like this guy even before hearing his music. What a story!

Right, delving straight in then, lets have a look at Palmer's June 2014 release Reassurance. You can tell right away that Ross has experience with production because this is a very nice, professional sounding record. You can also tell he's from London, with his accent coming through in his singing.

It's a very easy listening EP and it felt like it was over as soon as it began. There are some lovely,
melancholy tracks that just melt my heart but also some quite inspirational lyrical writing. Ross' voice portrays a feeling of vulnerability and innocence that compliment this melancholy sound, especially in the third track of the EP 'Teach Me To Believe' which is a real raw, stripped down vocals and guitar with a soft harmony here and there to give it some more substance. It's a perfect track. In fact, it's my favourite track.

The opening track and title track Reassurance really puts his emotions on the line with the lyric: 'I wouldn't believe you it you told me the truth, cause I don't know what is in this for you.' He sings truthfully throughout the whole record about topics I'm sure a lot of us could sympathise with. He says what we're all wanting to. This is the record we all wanted to write. Right?

The only issue I have is that I come out of listening to this EP feeling pretty emotionally drained. But I guess that's a good thing. I mean, the purpose of art is to create some sort of extreme emotional response and that's been done well here!

Moving away from the lyrics now, that's not the only thing that carries the album. There are some really nice, smooth bass lines and we're not just relying on a simple acoustic guitar here either, there's the depth building sound of various phased electric guitar parts and a few simple beats to drive it forward, which we need, because without it I think we'd be left behind as listeners.

Now, initially I would want to give this EP three stars. But track number three is an entire star on its own. I just love the fragility it portrays. So, Mr. Ross Palmer, you get four stars from me.
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