My first impression after listening through this EP a few times was this: “Whose voice does this remind me of??” After going through all the artists in my music collection I figured it out – it’s one of those Avett Brothers (Seth, I think.) Anyway, Lexington folks Josh Tatum and Alex Schaper have put together a really great sounding release, and have done a lot of stuff well here. Tatum’s voice is one of the more distinct voices around here – it’s very clear but is the small hint of vibrato that sets it apart from most others’. Having only heard Tatum with his own guitar accompaniment, it was nice to hear some additions to the sound from Alex Schaper. For the most part, his piano playing is a textural thing, adding color to the sound, but stands on its own feet on few occasions – namely at the end of “Hold It High.” Between his presence at the piano and his well balanced background vocals he does a lot to expand the sound of what I’d already heard, and in a great way. The final song, “Outlaws,” is probably my favorite of the album – they do a great job of creating a few pretty distinct moods throughout the song. It doesn’t hurt that they – perhaps inadvertently – referenced the band they remind of with the line “There’s a pretty girl from Georgia…” as well as a line about running down a gravel road “back through the hills of old Kentucky.” If you’re a fan of acoustic singer-songwriter music, particularly of the Avett Brothers, I have a feeling you’ll find this to be a nice listen.
Recommended if you Like: The Avett Brothers, Englishman, Andrew Bird
Tracks I Liked: All of them, but “Lost in Translation” and “Outlaws” especially.
– Ben Southworth