Alex Bayly was a nice find for me just as 2019 drew to a close. I first caught wind of this hard-working musician through listening to his beautiful single ‘Animal‘. He is one of the most dedicated gigging musicians in the city – he seems to be playing a gig every second day. His music struck us so much so that he played our second live showcase back in January.
He released his debut album Ley Lines last year and I grabbed a vinyl copy off him the night of the gig. I have been mad busy recently and only got the chance to sit and listen to it in full yesterday. It’s a wonderful collection.
Used Car Salesman (ft. Laish)
Loving Hands You Hide
Sky Love Girl
Jamie (ft. The Last Dinosaur)
Hunter’s Pass (ft. The Last Dinosaur)
The album opens with Distance, a track that became a staple in my playlists early this year. Alex’s smooth and husky vocals are escorted through the song by luscious strings and chirpy keys. This is a wonderfully beautiful track and it’s no wonder it picked up a bit of traction on it’s release. This is a really solid opening track.
My favourite track, Animal, follows on. The moody and atmospheric strings and plucky acoustic guitar instrumental section in the middle of the track always makes me sit quietly in contemplation. This song deserves to be heard by more people! What is going on in the world! Listen to it, please.
Bayly then pays tribute to a rugged and ragged ‘Used car salesman’ . This song was inspired by passing a car dealership down in South London on his travels. ‘Tis a nice one and has some really cool falsetto notes in the latter stages. The spooky acoustics and droning synths of ‘Loving Hands You Hide‘, bring us to the closing track on side A – the title track ‘Ley Lines‘.
Ley Lines is yet another vivid reminder of Bayly’s ability to churn out catchy, almost pop natured, Indie music. This is by far the most traditionally structured chorus with harmonies repeating the bouncy vocal melodies out again and again. It gets caught in your head.
Side A was a nice side.
‘Sky Love Girl’ starts out like a haunting Nick Mulvey piece. I used to love listening to Mulvey’s ‘The House of St Give Me’ – the opening here reminds me of that. Actually, if Nick Mulvey and Wild Beasts combined for a single – it would sound like ‘Sky Love Girl‘. This is a very underrated song – I hadn’t listened to it until now. It could well be my favourite? I tip my hat.
‘Sure As’ flows by in a whimsical haze and takes us to yet another highly impressive single, ‘Lonely Michael’. Alex went full on with this one and even made a pretty neat and edgy official video to go along with it. It raises the mood and is the dancing song of side B. Solid.
The Last Dinosaur accompanies on the final two tracks, Jamie and Hunter’s Pass. Jamie is an ambient track which isn’t overly my slice stylistically but I respect the artistry of course. The album finishes with the powerfully written Hunter’s Pass. It’s a slow, languid and emotional piece that plays us out peacefully and purposefully. A fine end to a brilliant debut collection of songs.
Catch him playing out the album live on the 5th of March @ The Finsbury Pub, London.
Check out more about Alex here:
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