The new single from Malcolm Holcombe is most notable for his tremendous vocal performance; his mesmerising voice is filled with emotion, character and weary experience. It feels as though Holcombe is talking directly to you: “Let the rain do the job // Let the rain fall on down // And wash away the walls // Standin’ tall on shaky ground,” and fans of John Prine and Tom Waits will recognise and enjoy that special storytelling quality. ‘Shaky Ground’ is a typically powerful song that Holcombe describes as driven by, “…spiritual strength by grace…and a good bass player.” That bass player is the talented Dave Roe and Holcombe is also ably supported by multi-instrumentalist Jared Tyler whose melodic electric guitar-work is a highlight of ‘Shaky Ground’. The accompanying video makes use of old black and white footage to reinforce the song’s mood and atmosphere. We see people at work, people out of work and those involved in military service. The overall effect is that the song forms the soundtrack to the lives of everyday people. Memorable moments include when we see colour in stark contrast to the rest of the visual: the red of a cocktail and of blood.
‘Shaky Ground’ is the second single from Holcombe’s upcoming album, ‘Tricks of the Trade’, which is due for release on 20th August. There’s a huge number of albums in Holcombe’s back-catalogue. Most impressively, the Nashville-based singer-songwriter has put out six albums and a separate series of singles since 2015. That remarkable level of creativity and productivity is to be applauded, especially since the high quality is so consistent. The stories can be tough and directly told but they are entirely accessible because Malcolm Holcombe pulls off that rare feat of managing to write songs that are at once intimately personal and universal. Full of humanity, there are songs for everyone here. We are delighted to premiere the video for ‘Shaky Ground’. Enjoy.