Americana UK – 9th August 2011
Stourbridge trio One Sixth of Tommy sound mightily accomplished, despite all the members still being in their teens. Definitely aiding the young trio’s cause is having Chris Hughes (McCartney, Tears for Fears) and Mark Frith (Tom McRae, Electric Soft Parade) behind the boards to produce and mix, and also adding guitar and percussion and keys for this debut self-penned release.
From the start, OSOT’s stock in trade is set out as sprightly acoustic pop, with a definite nod in the direction of the likes of Suzanne Vega, and exponents of new-folk. Chief vocalist and songwriter Jordan Martin, whose voice occasionally smoulders with a smokey sensuality, along with Joanna Grennan and Jorja Bates all contribute guitar and vocals, supplying sweetly laced harmonies to the likes of the stronger material such as ‘Care About It’, ‘In The Sun’ and ‘Everything’s OK’. these skip along attractively with glimpses of melancholy added to the girl’s tales of escape, and wounded and wished-for love. The anti-love song ‘In The Sun’ in particular is a gem of regret juxtaposed with the albums most glaring sunshine-laced pop arrangements.
The shimmering pop songs stand out, although Frith and Hughes’ touch has also leant the less instant, but still mightily pretty, ‘Escape’ and ‘Cotton Pockets’ gorgeous pillows of atmosphere and space to project upon. Not everything works so well though; their approach on some of the lesser material can be overly twee, also ‘Not Listening’, ‘For Always’ and ‘I’m Still Yours’ show there is still much room for growth in the songwriting department, but why they have sometimes chosen to deliver these otherwise well penned works in pseudo-American accents (‘Not Listening’ being a prime offender) is an irritating mystery.
‘You’re in My Head’ is never less than a pleasant listen; the better moments of breezy acoustic pop delight show there is a lot of potential for great things here on this debut. They’re not the fully formed package just yet, but they’re getting close. Their next steps will be worth watching. Ian Fildes
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