O&O “Truth Comes Out” (Independent, 2018)

‘Truth Comes Out’ is the debut EP from London-based duo O&O. Comprising of Orian Peled and Obadiah Jones. The pair, who originally hail from Israel and Colorado respectively, have an interesting backstory from meeting at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, and getting a one-on-one songwriting session with Sir Paul McCartney, through performing on Caribbean cruise ships while they sorted out visa issues, to performing at the O2 Arena in their current home city, Peled and Jones have experienced more in their thus far short existence than most acts experience in their lives.

Despite their ventures around the world, this is an EP firmly rooted in a modern style of Americana. The duo has drawn inevitable comparisons to The Civil Wars, but these are justified far beyond the boy/girl dynamic. Vocalist Obadiah Jones’ sounds very similar to John-Paul White, and they share the same melancholic songwriting style. On the excellent title track, which Jones takes lead on, he sings “don’t tell me you love me, you’ve already played that card” over the kind of gritty, rootsy riffs the great T Bone Burnett would be proud of. It is easily one of the finest Americana tracks released this year and encapsulates all that is good within the genre in the space of three and a half rollicking minutes.

‘Tears In The Rain’ which follows, is a far more mellow affair. Its tender melody gently drifting through as both Peled and Jones harmonise tremendously throughout. ‘Saturday Morning’ is a brief misstep. While perfectly pleasant enough, it sticks out on an otherwise strong record for being far too middle-of-the-road. ‘Rolling On’, however, provides the perfect bookend to close the EP. With Peled on lead vocal duties, she has an Alison Krauss-esque delivery on this stripped-back, gentle lullaby.

On their debut EP, O&O show plenty of promise and versatility which suggests a long career is awaiting them. They have combined their performing arts background with natural talent and passion to make ‘Truth Comes Out’ one of this year’s essential releases.

8/10

Summary

Excellent debut EP from Coloradan/Israeli duo, taking inspiration from The Civil Wars

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