Joel Ansett is an artist who has been firmly on our radar here at The Sound Sniffer for months ever since hearing his single ‘Cadillac‘. He hails from Denver, Colorado and is currently unsigned, believe it or not. He made real headway back in 2017, when his emotive folk ballad ‘Give Our Hearts Some Weight‘ amassed well over a million streams on SoundCloud alone – rightly so. He has just released his second album ‘A Place I Knew Before’ with the help of a crowdfunding campaign.
A Place I Knew Before (Album)
I always intended on writing this review but just couldn’t find the right moment to pen it. Since joining up with SubmitHub a few months ago, I have been immersed in the best up and coming tunes, Ansett features high on the list.
The album kicks off with the dreamy and almost haunting opening single ‘Homesick‘. This opener sets the scene with its subtle melancholic feel and crisp vocal performance. The lyrics are poignant with the album title line a central topic. It is a really emotive and beautiful start to the album.
We then bounce into the more uplifting pop orientated ‘Sugar Coat‘, which raises the mood instantly. This track shows off Ansett’s talent for penning top level, catchy numbers.
The outstanding ‘Cadillac‘ comes next and I don’t have enough superlatives to describe it. The song opens with a really simplistic guitar riff. The plucky bass notes are effective too. I must have played this one a hundred times over the summer.
Emotions are back running high throughout Pure, a hooky down-tempo ballad. Ansett’s vocals shines through nicely again here and also on Through. These two offer a moody and simplistic break and are well written songs. ‘Toward The Pain’ stops us in our tracks with its peculiar guitar playing, rousing intrigue in the intro. ‘Toward The Pain‘ is as shoe-gaze as it gets. Lovely Harmonies, Nice Bass and Uniquely raw instrumentation. Good on ya!
It Hurts Me raises the pace with a brooding bassline and soulful style. This song reminds me of the work of Darshaan, who is playing our showcase here in London at the end of October. It’s contemporary RnB in nature and as slick as an oil spill. The moody Geranium and intense Everday pass by and we are met with the supremely, glitchy ‘Slow Down‘. A real dime of a track, ‘Slow Down’ is a thing of beauty, its well worth digesting with a cup of tea steaming away in your hand. Chilled.
The album ends on the acoustic jingle ‘Dwelling Place‘, with a perky guitar riff accompanying Ansett’s distinguished vocals, this is a really suitable closing composition for the album.
A solid collection of songs.
Sniffer’s Rating: 8.0/10
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If you are still here scrolling , Check out info of our Showcase gig down at the Fox & Firkin on October 31st. It’s FREE ENTRY!! Darshaan — (BBC Introducing artist of the week 14th October 2019) is headlining. Info below!!