STYLE: Rock RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 173109-27500 LABEL: Independent FORMAT: CD EP ITEMS: 1
Reviewed by Lins Honeyman
Part of a series of concept EPs communicated via specific musical styles, this 2016 release from critically acclaimed US singer/songwriter Andrew Osenga ventures into ambient territory with a collection of instrumental pieces centred around the former Caedmon's Call singer's evocative electric guitar playing. In less adept hands, a project like this may flounder but Osenga maintains interest by ensuring proceedings continually morph from one state to another within the space of a song which in turn makes for a captivating and subtly powerful offering. For instance, the opener "None Of Us Knows" begins in ethereal fashion before Osenga and his guitar slowly build a wall of sound whilst the kind of single note fretwork found on earlier Coldplay albums enables "Why We Hurt The Ones We Love" to go from tender to fierce in one breath. With each wordless track possessing a meaningful title, the cautiously optimistic "Oh, To Have A Second Chance" is suitably represented by jangly acoustic guitars whilst the more considered "So We Bend In Sorrow" tends to a different emotion with some utterly beautiful electric guitar work from Osenga - full of swirling reverb and reminiscent of Mark Knopfler's 'Local Hero' soundtrack all those years ago. The ever-changing "Hoping For Peace, Praying For Pardon" helps to cement the spiritual nature of this EP before the strangely out of place "The Gifts Of The Father; Amendment Of Life" - a brief slice of pop that jars with the overall feel of the release - closes another fascinating and inventive outing by the talented Osenga.
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