Over here at the Musical Outcast I’m a big fan of surprises so I absolutely loved the fact that this song sounded nothing like I was expecting it to.
Let’s be honest, rightly or wrongly when you read the words ‘folk artist’ you immediately have a (Not always flattering) idea of what that person’s music will sound like. You’re thinking acoustic guitar, stripped back husky vocals yada, yada, yada… Well this new single from Ellie Ford couldn’t be more different.
Hailing from Brighton, not only is Ellie Ford a spectacular vocalist but she is also an accomplished guitarist and harpist too. I mean, aren’t we all? Ford released the Show Night In EP last year which received airplay from the likes of BBC Introducing South, while also playing festivals such as The Great Escape, Oxjam and Wood Festival.
July is the first single to be taken from upcoming debut album The Other Sun which was recorded at Broadoak Studios with Harvey Summers (Danny Thomson, Admiral Sir) earlier this year. That record is pencilled in for a Spring 2016 release and if this track is anything to go by I am more than interested in hearing what it has to offer.
As I mentioned at the outset, July isn’t your average folk track by any stretch of the imagination. In fact I’m struggling to remember when I reviewed a folk tune which had this much soul! Ford has got a very distinctive, smooth and sultry delivery which slides across a myriad of delicate melodies like honey over the top of fresh toast. The song has also got a very clear beginning, middle and end. It starts slowly, building up gradually as more instruments are added to the fold before winding down through a more stripped back acoustic section.
There’s a smooth, flowing, precise feel to July which immediately elevates it above so many other what you’d call ‘folk’ records. It’s multi-layered and glides between its very distinct sections with consummate ease. Add that to what is a mightily impressive vocal and you’ve got quite the outstanding song on your hands.
My advice here is that if you’re not a fan of folk, don’t be put off by the label, just approach the track with an open mind and if you’ve got any appreciation of melody and vocal ability you’ll be rewarded.
July is simply a fantastic piece of music.
July is released 9th November.