Wednesday, 24 August 2011
New Artist Alert: Thomas Neptune
When We Were Beautiful would like to introduce Thomas Neptune, a multi-instrumentalist who currently resides in Los Angeles and continues to 'carry the musical torch' as he follows in his talented family's footsteps. He may have been seen from time-to-time behind the drum-kit, but we all know that drummers are secretly envious of the attention deserved by the lead-singer and it's not long before we (and I use the term collectively!) crave more of the lime-light. Well, Neptune is one such soul, whose debut EP 'Down To Earth' features himself front and centre and I've been lucky enough to snatch a listen.
The prickly, picky and extremely-positive sounding 'Unbreakable' opens with a great uplifting feel and showcases Neptune's soulful, slightly rustic vocals early on. Wise move; this guy has a voice made for radio and his lyrical prowess and arrangements cry out for airplay. It's an almost boy-band sounding vocal but works fantastically against a less-contempary backdrop with swamping synths, bubbling electronics and syncopated rhythms. I'm not sure about the American market, but I'm thinking Neptune should definitely get his music heard by music mogul Simon Cowell as I think he's sitting on a goldmine in terms of an audience across the pond; UK pop fans would lap this up.
'The Good Times' features equally-feel-good acoustic guitar and I love the no-fuss attitude of Neptune's arrangements; no time-wasting in the intros, just get straight to it. The vocals are as confident and crisp as before and he picks fantastic melodies which are kind to the ear and lean towards his pop-friendly sound. The verses are minor and lift to more major-sounding choruses, reminiscent of artists as diverse as Nickelback to The Calling but the constant remains the same; the method works and sells records. The slight lead-guitar work in the second verse was a welcome addition and I love the vocal melody that leads into the choruses. The only thing the song feels it could do with after the short but complete breakdown is a key-change...cheesy perhaps but it just might work! Even without it though this track is great.
A brief listen to 'My Ohio' reveals a foot-stomping, hoe-downing, slide-guitaring party that could tap into an entirely new and different market in the American pop-Country charts that's becoming a little more accepted in the UK with similar artists such as Keith Urban and Taylor Swift. Neptune is certainly sitting on a goldmine, fingers crossed I'll be hearing him on UK Top 40 Radio before the year is out!
'Down To Earth' is available from iTunes here and Thomas Neptune is, of course, available to check out on Facebook.