Author Archives: Nick Jarman

About Nick Jarman

Music writing as a hobby, neuroscience student at Cambridge University as profession. In the market for music-industry jobs, so if you like what you read, don't be shy! Otherwise you will either find me up a mountain, or on a cricket pitch!
May
23

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Dierks Bentley ‘Black’ – Album Review

dierks-bentley-black-album-cover

After the personal emotional outpouring of ‘Riser’ that was the perfect mainstream album, I, and many others, were curious and cautious as to what Dierks Bentley would release as a follow up. Using the trendy tactic of promotional videos to tease new material, Dierks released ‘Somewhere On A Beach’ (the lead single), ‘I’ll Be The Moon (feat. Maren Morris)’, ‘What The Hell Did I Say’, ‘Pick Up’ and finally, ‘Black’ in the lead up to this week’s album release.

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Apr
12

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Sturgill Simpson ‘A Sailor’s Guide To Earth’ – Album Review

sturgill-sailor-guide-earth-new-album

Sturgill Simpson hasn’t shown us what he’s about yet. His debut ‘High Top Mountain’ introduced him as a sincere writer with a voice to stretch the generations without taking a lot of risk. ‘Metamodern Sounds In Country Music’ took us down a different path, taking his traditional sound and warping it into something so much more interesting with his innovative writing and the ballsy production by Dave Cobb. For ‘A Sailor’s Guide To Earth’, Sturgill has taken over the reigns fully, writing and producing the whole album himself, and thus exposing much more about who he is as a musician. I’m always impressed by musicians producing their records because whilst writing is hugely important, the production quality can break a great poem, or lift an average lyric to different heights.

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Apr
11

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Sam Outlaw @ The Tunnels, Bristol, UK | April 10, 2016 – Review

samoutlaw

It was a wet and windy evening that brought me to Bristol to see Sam Outlaw, one of the more impressive finds of 2016. I really took to the non-Nashville-based sound on his ‘Angeleno’ record, belonging more in the West, and having some wonderful Mariachi influences, probably both coming from his background in California, where the Mexican population is particularly large. Whilst I didn’t expect to hear much of this in such a small venue, the acoustic music spoke for itself, and the result was still somewhat original and something that the small crowd definitely responded to.

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Apr
7

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Hayes Carll ‘Lovers & Leavers’ – Album Review

Hayes Carll, Lovers And Leavers (LabelTK/Thirty Tigers 2016)

(LabelTK/Thirty Tigers 2016)

I was first introduced to Hayes Carll through my great love of Lee Ann Womack. Being the writer of ‘Chances Are’, one of the real highlights of ‘The Way I’m Livin’’, Hayes immediately became one of my favourite songwriters, portraying an authenticity and beauty that great music should. It has taken me a while to delve into his own records, but I am pleased to say ‘Lovers & Leavers’ is a fantastic introduction into the sincere music of Hayes Carll.

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Mar
7

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Eric Church @ Greunspan, Hamburg, Germany | March 3, 2016 – Review

Taking advantage of the all-expenses pass given by the Country to Country music festival in London, many of the artists present at the UK festival have taken the time to go out of their way to explore some more of mainland Europe. Being one of my favourite countries in the world, there was no chance I would turn down the opportunity to see Eric Church play a club-venue in Germany. Greunspan, situated in the heart of the notorious red-light district of Hamburg, was a great venue, barely holding one thousand, and it did feel like time was turned back given that in America it is unlikely that you’ll see Eric playing anything less than an amphitheater or arena!

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Feb
19

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Vince Gill ‘Down To My Last Bad Habit’ – Album Review

vince-gill-down-to-my-last-bad-habit-album-cover

Vince Gill needs no introduction, especially from someone like me, who is largely inexperienced in much of his immense back catalogue. Being one of the most versatile musicians around, and being an experienced producer, musician, performer and writer, you can almost always expect a complete album with very few weak links from Vince. ‘Down To My Last Bad Habit’ is no exception, with fantastic guitar playing, homely vocals and a great groovy vibe.

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Jan
29

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Frankie Davies On Nashville, C2C And, Of Course, The Weather – Interview

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Frankie Davies is one of the most exciting up-and-comers on the UK country music scene. Having seen her at a London showcase last year and then at her gig supporting Chris Young on his sold-out European tour, I am a huge fan of her music, and it has just been announced that she has a slot on the pop-up stages at Country2Country this year at the O2 Arena in London. I caught up with her as she prepares to go to Nashville to finish her album.

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Jan
27

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Aubrie Sellers ‘New City Blues’ – Album Review

Let’s acknowledge the elephant in the room: yes, Aubrie is the daughter of Lee Ann Womack, something that you can definitely find in her perfect, wonderful vocals. Whilst Aubrie doesn’t make a secret of her lineage, as an emerging artist it doesn’t pay to rest on your family name, and nor does she, because ‘New City Blues’ explores a dirtier, edgier sound than anything her mother has done, and the result is stunning, gritty, beautiful and edgy, using an eclectic mix of blues, country, rock and thankfully not much pop. ‘New City Blues’ is already placed at number one on my end of 2016 album list, and it will take something really special to displace it. Continue reading