Monday, 10 June 2013

New Artist Alert: Doug Panton

Today marks the release date for Doug Panton's self-titled debut EP, available across most digital platforms worldwide. 19 year old Panton, an Essex-based singer-songwriter, has spent the best part of a year creating and producing his debut offering and is excited for his first release to finally be available, after a DIY background of accumulating fans from YouTube and at his live shows - a highlight of which includes performing for 15,000 people at the International Jamboree 2012. Panton has already been rubbing shoulders with some of the industry bigwigs including Mark Topham (Westlife, Il Divo) and Dave Scott (Oasis) having had the EP produced by the latter alongside Atomic Kitten engineers at Brook Lodge Studio. With some national radio airplay in his back pocket also, Panton is hoping his self-titled record is going to continue turning heads and attract some critical acclaim, and it seems to me as if he's well on the way to achieving just that.

It's all pretty impressive on paper, but what about where it really matters? Thankfully, Panton delivers musically as much as he does elsewhere; the EP kicks off with Young, introduced by some frantic finger-picking on an acoustic guitar and some Bastille-esque choral backing vocals. Panton's vocal is perfectly suited to today's pop market and sits confidently on top of the mix, leading the charge in a particularly pleasant opening track; it often reminds me of Ed Sheeran when melodically trailing off of the end of some of the notes and sets the scene for the EP effectively.

All or Nothing is sitting pretty halfway through, the trademark ballad-feel and tribal percussion making themselves known whilst the chorus is as strong as its predecessors in consideration of the genre; there definitely feels as if there's a film soundtrack in here somewhere. The piano drives this track, with some sparse lead-guitar work dropping in every so often to add another melodic layer as I'm again reminded of an Ed Sheeran b-side - surely not a bad comparison by any means.

Closing the show is Agree to Disagree; notably more major-feeling than minor, this feel-good finale relies on the vocals to carry the melody which they do well atop a simple chord progression. I feel the production is key on this track; although the chorus is packed a little fuller than the verses, it still maintains the light, floating feel to the track and is revisited often. It's just what is needed and rounds off the EP nicely whilst holding on to that sing-along, radio-friendly feel that has been established since track one.

The EP is available online now, and be sure to keep up to date with Doug via his Facebook page. In the meantime, enjoy this short teaser video to sample the EP for yourself, a try before you buy if you like. Enjoy.

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Thanks for taking the time to write :)