Artist – George Ezra
Album – Wanted On Voyage (2014)
Check it out – https://open.spotify.com/album/5tF2lAa2rh2kU2xIiBzWia
George Ezra is a Bristol based singer-songwriter with a style firmly stuck in the pop-folk genre. Most notably from Ezras music is his extraordinary deep (bass-baritone) voice, which stands out when you watch this young 19 year old lad. George notes Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan as influences, which can be heard within his music. through two E.Ps and shows with BBC Introducing George Ezra has began making a name for himself and reached the point in which he was ready to put out his first full length album ‘Wanted On Voyage’.
George Ezras stand out feature (his voice) is used to full effect on this album, booming over the standard acoustic folk style tracks and interweaving with some catchy melodies on piano and guitar. The catchy ‘Budapest’ makes a return from Ezras previous E.P to add a bit of commercialism and similarity for his audience and new comers. Along with the catchier, more upbeat tracks, songs such as ‘Did You Hear The Rain’ leave the listener with a chill. Ezras haunting vocals in the beginning of this song are reminiscent of old blues singers such as Howlin Wolf and Muddy Waters … which is a big compliment. Instrumentation isn’t wide and varied in this album, but sticks to what is known well and works well within the folk genre, acoustic guitar, brushed drums, bass, piano and the occasional electric guitar. There are a few special moments with more varied instruments, but these sections are very sparse and add more of a special moment than add depth to the whole album.
I feel the album could have gained from a tad more variety. There are the occasional pop hit and hauntingly soft track, but mainly the whole album comprises of very similar folk pop tracks, at very similar tempos, which makes the whole album sound like one long song with a few changes. Commercially the album seems to miss the amount of hit songs that would push Ezra to the forefront of pop … but that isn’t what makes folk what it is, so maybe George needs to move towards the deeper (in subject) side if he wants to be more serious about the genre than the pop side of his music.
Overall this is a decent album, featuring a number of interesting and enjoyable tracks, with Georges voice being the main highlight of anything he puts out.