Autumn’s Passage’s eponymous debut EP is catchy, textured folk-rock-indie-pop at its finest.
The Adelaide duo – Hayley Beck on vocals and Liam Convey on guitar – present smartly composed and smoothly astute songs which are entertaining and suspenseful in old-fashioned ways. It’s retro-style with pure magic from the first beat to the last refrain.
Matt Hill’s production has a nostalgic feel, while the solid collection of original tunes paints a vivid, honest portrait of life from Beck’s unique perspective. She has the kind of talent that can produce elegant, mature work with poise and insight without pushing her tales into melancholia. There’s a real integrity about her expression that resonates; each song is a story.
If there is a nit-pick, it’s in the affected vocals – Beck seems to have not quite discovered her own voice yet, instead assuming the kind of unnatural enunciation that’s prevalent throughout the genre at present. However, even if it is a weakness, it’s one that easily slides into the background as the listener gets involved with the musical stories that unfold.
The third track, “Sparklers”, is the stand-out. It sounds like the kind of folk-pop produced by Al Stewart, and indeed Convey’s guitar playing is as inspired as Peter White’s ,with a similar jazz-fusion sense and sound. The track feels like a watercolour running in the rain, or, as the lyrics say, like kisses that taste like sunset. It’s melodic, intense, yet delightfully evocative and meaningful.
There rest of the EP isn’t too varied in tone, but it doesn’t matter with tracks of this quality. There isn’t a host of twists and surprises in the music, yet by the time you reach the stylish final song, “Yours to Keep (Obsession)”, you’re already impatient to hear this band’s next release.
Autumn’s Passage are expecting to release their first full-length album next summer.
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