Title: Only Son
Artist: Jekyll Wood
License: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0
So, I recommended this release to someone on Twitter today. He was very surprised by the recommendation. Why? Well, first I think it was because the description is “folk” and “groove”, and second because he felt this recording was a “singer / songwriter” type of recording. Yes, all of those elements are in this release. However, there is a lot more to it than just those elements, and I think to some degree Jekyll Wood may have done himself a bit of a disservice by using the tag “folk”.
Along with those tags, he does say “rock” and “acoustic” – which are far more apt of a description of this work: acoustic groove rock would probably not evoke the negative reaction that “folk” does.
But even then, it wouldn’t be adequate to describe what this recording accomplishes. Jekyll Wood takes influences from numerous directions, and distills them through his process, and crafts them into one of the freshest sounds I’ve heard this year. Just to give you an idea of some of the influences I hear in this work: Michael Hedges, Nick Drake, Spanish Flamenco, and quite a bit more. His style ranges from straight pop-rock to funk groove, to experimental, and even borders on ambient without leaving the realms of rock music. Oh, and I shouldn’t forget the exceptional vocals and harmonies.
Jekyll Wood is an artist that has spent his time playing live, doing solo guitar shows with electronic sampling and looping to fill out his sound as a full band. An example of this style is found in the last track on the EP. There’s also an excellent video of him performing without the electronics (there are more videos of Jekyll Wood performing on YouTube – really worth checking out):
So, honestly, I can’t give this release enough praise. It’s extremely fresh, and extremely well performed, written and everything. The studio recording nails the dynamics of Jekyll Wood’s performances. Just give it a listen, and if you are like me, you will likely become a fan of his work.
I’ve said before that I should make a list of my favorite releases so far this year. This release would be in the top five of that list. Right there with Talk Less, Say More and Small Colin.
Supposedly this is just a “teaser” EP, and if that is the case, I will be looking forward to the full release. And, I can’t wait to see what does after this release. I have the feeling that I will be following Jekyll Wood for a long time.