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Other than metal in its various forms, traditional rock music often seems dated; the reserve of pub covers bands full of middle-aged men. Yet rock music is enjoying something of a revival at the moment, with more young people moving away from more electronic and pop genres. This has given rise to a surge in the number of what would broadly be described as "alt-rock" artists. That term is almost as wide-ranging as rock or pop themselves, but it means that people who prefer bands (or the style of music they make) as opposed to people hunched behind Macs have a wealth of music to dig in to and find exactly what they're looking for. One such artist is George Ezra, a UK musician currently based in Bristol, a city renowned for both alt-rock and experimental sounds.
We get both on the title-track from his new EP. The guitars are unholy, the voice is strong and soulful, the song is well-written and excellently produced. So as well as the desert-rock atmosphere that is stirred up here, and as well as the intensity of the lyrics and the force and stature of the song, we get an experimental side too. It might be those dirty guitars and those rich vocals that take centre-stage, but the electronics incorporated into the backing aren't just there for show or for the sake of diversification, they play an important part of giving this song identity, making it sound modern, not a throwback to the well-worn side of the genre, and they also broaden the appeal of a very fine song. For a bit more of a taste of this EP, the less brooding 'Budapest' is available to download for free and shows a lighter, almost country-influenced side to Ezra's writing. Something that only serves to prove he's not willing to be stuck in one place musically.
Download 'Budapest' for free from George Ezra's website
Buy the EP
Catch him live:
SAT 02 NOV Olympia Theatre, Dublin, Ireland
SUN 03 NOV Mandela Hall, Belfast, UK
SAT 23 NOV O2 Academy Bristol, Bristol, UK
FRI 29 NOV Southampton Guildhall, Southampton, UK
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