Sunday, 31 May 2015

Jess Morgan - The Bournemouth EP : Self Released

Never an artist to rest on her laurels, Jess Morgan has not been fazed by this latest short release being hot on the heels of last year’s album LANGA LANGA and firmly decided it was a right time to commit a number of new songs to a recorded format. So in between the end of a busy year and a new one beginning with a month long US trip, THE BOURNEMOUTH EP was born with an uncanny resemblance to what Jess was about to experience on this hop across the pond. This is by far the most Americana tinged set of songs grouped together by Jess who continues to grow her presence generally within the UK folk scene.

Now, the choice is simple to purchase this collection, either get five tracks by ordering from the artist friendly platform Bandcamp or four from that universally available download store. The fifth or unreleased track is succinctly titled ‘American Song (unreleased field recording)’ and assumedly takes its influence from the trip where Jess called at New York and Nashville on her way to performing at the prestigious Folk Alliance showcase in Kansas City. Like its four accompanying tracks on the extended version, the recording perfectly captures the elegant tones of Jess’s sumptuous vocals delving straight into the heart of her outpourings of song writing observational wisdom.

If anything, Jess has dug a little deeper into her vocal repertoire than on previous records with this time her hearty whispering vocals revealing a touch more soul and host of sunken treasure. The defining mood of these five tracks is the heady mix of an intimate house concert with the sophistication of a studio arrangement. The major winner is the listener who opens the door and peeks into a sonic sanctuary for a brief 20 minutes. Existing fans of Jess will be familiar with one of the chosen tracks slated for this record as she has bravely opted to slightly rehash probably her finest song to date. ‘Freckles in the Sun (2015)’ is already cast as a quality number and the tinkering has put a bright new sheen on a substantial piece of song writing excellence.

Elsewhere on all formats of the EP, the three new tracks evoke memories of an enchanting charm with ‘Time Machine’ being elegantly crafted on the piano before melting into its luscious mode of consumption. ‘Simple Mantra’ sees a little harmonica added to a subtle gentle guitar led piece, while opening tune ‘Down in Flames’ has a laid back jazzy feel to its make up coupled with a lot more twang than we are used to from Jess’s recordings. The sum of these gilt-edged components fully justifies the impromptu decision Jess made to go ahead with THE BOURNEMOUTH EP and there will be no complaints from her growing list of admirers.

These informed people already identify Jess Morgan as one of the hardest working performers on the acoustic circuit and a fiercely independent artist successfully matching her endeavours with material of endearing quality. As usual Jess will be busy this summer promoting the record with an evolving list of dates in all formats - festivals, gig and anybody who wishes to book her. If you form part of the uninitiated then sampling THE BOURNEMOUTH EP is a low risk-high dividend investment. To those in the know, keep spreading the word.

www.jessmorgan.co.uk



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