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Tommy Ashby // Family Man // Common Jack // Field Guide // AJ Turner //

Tommy Ashby – Steady Hand

Is it greener on the other side? Maybe. Maybe not. ‘Steady Hand’ is an exculpation to the delight of the other. In reflection, you question your own worth. The worth of what has made it ‘worth it’ to you to live the way you had, so far. TOMMY ASHBY’s single is a harkening back to the pop-rock traditions of stalwarts Genesis, Mike And The Mechanics, but deliciously updated with his trade mark vocal beauty amplified with wisps of Bruce Hornsby and Don Henley. “I’d spent a lot of time wandering through incredible towns and cities, watching everyone go about their lives, but it left me feeling like a bit of a ghost. I think it is no surprise that mental health issues are prevalent in the music industry, where there are so few constants. I think touring can leave musicians craving routine as much as 9-5 jobs can leave people wanting to escape it!” So, is the other side greener? Let’s just say make the betterment of what you have in front of your nose. Love, as you see, in the now. See TOMMY ASHBY in his headline show at The Slaughtered Lamb (London) on April 10th.

Family Man – Volt

FAMILY MAN is a brand new band with the trio of Josh Wilson, Russell Mann and Jordan Gosney making it happen to this conclusion of decadence named ‘Volt’. The amplitude is at 10 as the single bashes with ice cold surgical blades, slicing into delightful hard-rock retribution. The Southampton band has something more than nice on this project. It’s the definition of the quenching ‘water’ you’d been seeking. ‘Volt’ curates the indicative to the malicious vanities of the world, then crushes, with chic effortlessness. In the palm of FAMILY MAN, the ripened power guitars, nudge your senses into overdrive, where it doesn’t matter where you’ve headed, as long as ‘Volt’ deems the journey complete. Frontman Wilson said: “We’re all human shaped Pandora’s boxes of paradoxical feelings and, when thrust into the wonder and horror of modern living, become complicit in the primal desire to lose oneself amongst the chaos.” Exactly. Let’s keep this going. Roar.

Common Jack – Canyons in the Dark

Brooklyn based project COMMON JACK is John Gardner’s resistance statement to the ether. Out of the darkness – a private darkness – the delight and light beams as golden as the ‘Canyons In The Dark’ portrays. It is that fight with honesty and clamoring to be exactly that. The tugging of monstrous simplicity, is as hard as the most complicated of relationships. But with the delicious lyrical works and vocal attention by John, no matter what’s happening on your sliver of Earth, you fly in the clouds. You levitate towards the clouds as the country-folk pop visions, makes your skin tingle with pride. The chill of the upper atmospheres bother you none, as you continue to soar upwards. Will the wings hold, in the glory of that warmth? Hope so. Will take that chance, for sure.

Field Guide – Full Time

Dylan McDonald is FIELD GUIDE. He writes songs of relationships, emotional deprivations, and unrequited notions. Closing of that door, where at the other end will only suffer the consequences of what’s apparent. Love hurts. She hurt you. He indelibly hurt you. Never again, you say to yourself. But there was something about it that keeps you thinking, wandering, wondering. That door to another past never ceases to disappear, and you move forward while still keeping one foot in that edge. ‘Full Time’ is Dylan’s debut solo effort, and through the diminutive and understated chord progressions, only the slight of hand from the world around Dylan’s experiences seep into the roots of the song. It filters with clarity and hindsight, but still impressed with the unsureness that is expected and understandable by listeners. The contrast is what ‘Full Time’ can be construed as. And we dig it, with open arms.

AJ Turner – Trying Not To Think Of You

AJ TURNER is an open book. He wants to try. And if you love him, he will be there for you, protecting you, wanting you. The Chelmsford UK based singer/songwriter, “aims to write pop songs with good catchy melodies”. AJ continued: “I’ve been writing songs and playing in bands for a long time and I suppose I’m a bit too old to be sending out demos but I’m still inspired and writing songs and would still like them to be heard by more people.” The charm is AJ’s vocals and lyrics that are loaded with emotions and unsubstantiated angst. But the delivery in light and airy ‘innocence’ is delightful and a spectacle, all to themselves. In love? AJ recommends you be upfront. If not to the other, then to your own self. You deserve that.


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