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Music |

Review: Paul Cook & the Chronicles – Volume One

Monday 11 June 2012

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Words Spindle

London based Paul Cook & The Chronicles made their debut on the scene in 2011 with their first single Six Places. BBC radio 2 and XFM picked up the track, while a live session on the Dermot O’Leary show cemented Paul Cook’s place on the ‘ones to watch’ list. Paul Cook & the Chronicles – Volume One

I sit here in my cold office, rain pissing down on the metal awning outside my window. Volume One opens with Six Places playing; I get tingles. It fits. The sweet softness of the track seems to melt into the sound of the rain outside. It’s beautiful, gentle and kind of refreshing.

Cook speaks of wasted time, being fooled by love, being fooled six times in fact, and how to avoid it. It may be the rain, it may be the painkillers I’m on, either way I’m grateful for the nostalgia that Paul Cook & The Chronicles has pulled out of me this morning. Think Elliott Smith but sweeter, more melodic and less tortured.

Volume One continues to meander through the same head-space; Airy, sweet and gently melodic. With inspirations cited including Neil Young, Paul Simon and Gram Parsons, musically, the album would fall under soft folk rock I guess, however, has the ability to melt in and out of the genre with ease as Cook waltzes around his music, painting the songs with different shades of his lyrical hues.

Atmospheric, honest and innocent.

Rolling along effortlessly, Candlelight gives us a little hope amidst the heartbreak. Silent Heart is there for you when the bottle of whiskey is finished and I Forgive You is waiting to wrap it’s arms around you when it’s all over. Embracing you, letting you know that everything will be OK.

Along with producer Julian Simmons, Cook has created a space of contemplation that almost feels like a concept album but without the wankery.

I like it. I like it a lot.

Words: Brent Randall