EP Review: Edd Lane (Thin Man Records) – The Sailors Escape

“Raise the sails and face the storms, when everything else fails they’ll return to port”

These are just a few of the unique lyrics on Edd Lanes recently released EP – The Sailors Escape.

Coming from the Westcountry (UK) this is a rare gem in terms of it being a genuinely easy to listen to piece of contemporary folk. For many people the entire genre of folk in all its forms is thought of as a specialist genre. One thing I will tell you before I continue is that this is a testament to folks versatility as a genre in an ever-changing musical world.

Edd Lane

Lane is a kind of storyteller, each and every song has its own character which really means your attention is held throughout the 5 songs on the The Sailors Escape. From the opening song ‘Soul Laid Bare’ making you want to sing along, to the closing song ‘Sail the Seas’ which is quite frankly very thought provoking.

The instrumentation on this EP consists of the guitar, fiddle and vocals. This makes for a very warm sound and could be easily imagined in a cosy-little tavern out deep in the English countryside. I have to emphasise that I am impressed at how easy these songs are to listen to. It’s refreshing to be able to listen to every word of a song and be pleased, before even considering the diverse range of tunes played on the various instruments.

One particular song on this EP that I like is ‘Arthur’. This is a song all about King Arthur which is a classic folk characteristic to incorporate legend within song content. As this legend is very exciting the lyrics take the opportunity to create a lot of imagery, which really brings this legend to life. However lively this song is, around half way through everything slows down. There’s suddenly prominent finger work on the fiddle in a gentle collaboration with long standing bass notes, providing a warm change of pace. This aspect of the song really adds another level to the overall dynamic, which only has a positive effect.

Lane doesn’t just sing about legend though. The song ‘Closure’ for example was written for Lanes sister as a piece of advice. There’s a very emotional theme throughout this song which is easy to relate to in terms of emotional experiences of one kind or another. The backing vocals are lovely although occasionally they distract attention away from the actual lyrics of Lane. All the same – it’s a very touching piece of work and a nice collaboration.

I do like Edd Lanes voice as well as his lyrics. He has a well-rounded rough voice, but is also able to sing across a range of notes without any problem. My main criticism is that sometimes Lane pronounces T’ heavily and holds S’ slightly longer in parts, but this is to be expected as the entire EP feels like it has a Live element to it. It’s not an overly noticeable part in any of the songs unless you’re sitting down and listening to the entire thing on repeat – and even then it’s mostly personal preference.

The Sailors Escape EP artwork, designed by Lanes sister.

Overall this EP has been put together very well. It’s not only well recorded, but obviously has had a good amount of time invested in mixing and production, which is always a sign of quality. I think that there’s clearly a running theme throughout the EP, yet it retains individuality in each song. The good thing about having a theme is the fact that it gives the collection of songs as a whole, it’s own unique identity.

I’m certainly keeping this to listen to –  it even has a kick ass solo with some nice slides and an especially impressive transition down the fretboard.

The Sailor’s Escape EP is available to download now from iTunes et al as well as a Limited Deluxe Edition featuring a T-Shirt and Postcard, which can be found at both sites below.

Give Edd Lanes EP a listen before you buy at: http://thinmanrecordings.bandcamp.com/album/the-sailors-escape-ep

and

Visit his page at: http://eddlane.com/

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