James Dey – the night-time
The debut album from this Leeds based singer/songwriter is focused, as the title suggests, with the night and all the myriad experiences that are contained within. It’s another sure-fire reason why this mellow folk journey makes for a fitting late night lullaby. It’s peaceful meanderings are the perfect relaxation soundtrack thanks to the understated instrumentation and Dey’s Donovan-esque vocals. Whilst mostly consisting of acoustic guitar and piano, the snippets of brass on ‘Hedgehog’ and ‘When No One’s Talking’ add a whole new dynamic to the album. The production is of a surprisingly high quality and in fact the album as a whole feels a whole lot more professional than one would expect from an independent artist.
Naturally there are still a few teething problems here and there, such as the somewhat repetitive ‘Everything is After’, but overall the night-time feels very cohesive. There are certainly times when I feel like it needs a few risks, such as some more upbeat numbers to mix things up, but at the same time that could end up disrupting the flow. The album’s standout moment is the dramatic build towards the end of ‘Smokers in the Corridor’ which gives a glimpse into how future releases might grow and develop the sound. I would hope for something grander and more expansive in future but Dey has made a solid start and has the necessary talent and vision to make his mark.