Alanna Matty “This Past Year” (EP) (Independent, 2019)

Intimate. A word overused, often lazily, to describe the elemental voice and acoustic guitar approach to song presentation that is pretty much omnipresent nowadays. However, Torontarian (yes that’s a real word) Alanna Matty really does serve up the most intimate of sounds on this four-track EP. You can hear the faint rumble of the world outside as the home-recorded acoustic guitar parts herald each song, the bass threatening to overload the mic. Clicks, stomps and whispered count offs are also to be heard – the flotsam and jetsam of recording that are normally discarded in the mixing and editing process. Continue reading “Alanna Matty “This Past Year” (EP) (Independent, 2019)”

Nick Ellis “Daylight Ghosts” (Mellowtone Records, 2017)

Throughout this record Ellis’ guitar playing is excellent and the sound is clear and resonant (it was recorded in Liverpool St George’s Hall Crown Court Room) and it’s clear the further that Ellis gets from standard acoustic singer-songwriter fare, the better he sounds. The opener The Grand Illusion survives only on its guitar playing and the following Hanging Around with its poppier melody weaves a far more interesting pattern. Ellis has the voice for rock and the fingers to play pretty much whatever he pleases; the beautiful cascading phrases of Carillon are brought back to earth by the vocal. Where the pieces are unencumbered by the vocals they really stretch out as Dance of the Cat and Good Morning Mr Hirons show. Continue reading “Nick Ellis “Daylight Ghosts” (Mellowtone Records, 2017)”