The Bristol-based George Ezra has quietly been building up a fair-ol’ reputation with the release of his debut album- Wanted On Voyage. With the notable success of his breakthrough single- Budapest, Wanted On Voyage flew up the UK charts to number three, it also managed to chart across Europe and in Australia too.
A while back I wrote an article on how pop music is starting to improve following a will.i.am-infested few years, and George Ezra is definitely within that bracket of fresh talent. Drawing comparisons from the likes of Jake Bugg, Jason Mraz and Jack Johnson, George Ezra’s music is laid-back yet enthralling. His soulful baritone vocals begin as somewhat contrapuntal against the mellow make-up of the track, such as on Barcelona, one of Wanted On Voyage’s highlights.
George Ezra dips into another less straight-forward techniques on his debut, Spectacular Rival is an example of this what with the drum machine, haunting background strings that become more and more present as the song progresses, we’re then met with a droning solo reminiscent of Alex Turner and co. It shows Ezra as much more versatile, and less straight-forward than his singles might suggest. Again coinciding with this is the hard-hitting Did You Hear The Rain? which leaves a lot of work to Ezra’s impressive vocal talents.
Wanted On Voyage is an impressive debut. The strengths of the album lie with Ezra’s vocals, we don’t have enough of them in British music right now, and Ezra’s a breath of fresh air in a fairly bleak genre. The 12-track LP is very likeable, a wide range of music fans can take a lot away from Wanted On Voyage, things do fall a little flat at points such at towards the end of the album with Over The Creek and Breakaway, but on the whole a solid debut from George Ezra.
Verdict – WWWV