Nick Byrne – Through the Tall Grass

EP Review | Self Release | Review by Marc Higgins | Stars: 3/5

The songs on this five track EP offer a slice of melodic, meditative acoustic folk pop. Nick has a pleasing voice with an earnest melancholic lilt. Plaintive ballads are underpinned by strings and an occasional electric slide. Opener “Half” sets a layered vocal over a strummed jangling guitar in a way that recalls Jose Gonzales with a wonderfully English cello. “Mind Maps” is a gentle reflective song with atmospheric slide, dreamy acoustic strumming and some delicate vocals that bring 70s introspective singer songwriters like Al Stewart or 80s acoustic pop to mind. “Birch Tree” continues the same feel, with those wonderfully English strings, and the melancholic slide guitar that is one of the CDs highlights. “This Town” starts with a solo guitar beautifully played, a lovely electric guitar refrain that nods to 80’s indie pop atmosphere merchants The Sundays. Nick’s guitar on “Through The Tall Grass”, the final track is heavenly, as an exercise in atmosphere it is the most completely successful track on the EP. A stripped back arrangement lets the tracked vocal shine through and the dissolve into atmospherics and bird song at the end underlines the pastoral imagery and nature of this album​. Lyrically the imagery ties all of the songs together, making this feel like a song suite that washes over you as a whole or one long soundscape. A strong opening effort from an intimate performer who turns it down to draw you in.