Although not based within our parish boundaries, Nick Tann has over the last few years become such a regular part of the local music scene that he certainly does feel like one of our own. In a world of Ed Sheeran wannabes and Frank Turner acolytes, Nick’s blend of soulful jazz and folk is refreshingly mature, no boyish whining or unrealistic idealism, just worldly reflections and real world musings, but wrapped around that lyrical mission the music manages to really push the boundaries of the guy with a guitar format.
The title track starts in familiar territory, this boy’s gotta go blues lyrics to a late night shuffling soul beat, a stark contrast to the subject matter of Coming Home, a lilting and joyous reunion and a clever reference to the 3 AM of the title song, emotional bookends, heartstrings pulled in two different directions.
Sadder Than Sad goes for a lounge jazz singer vibe, staccato strums and muted trumpet evoke smoky late night clubs but one of the most interesting songs presented here is Never Did Me Harm which seems to wander the genres with it’s mad back beats and wailing Tex-Mex harmonica and the minimal and heartfelt chorus, a Sergio Leone sound track with a Damien Rice interlude…intriguing.
What Nick is good at is taking the singer-song writing template and finding something new to do with it, although when he does take a traditional route the quality alone makes the songs stand out, that and a voice that manages to combine power with control, soaring when required but with an inbuilt soulfulness as it’s default setting. Not a bad tool to have in the musical box of tricks.