‘Nameless EP’ by James Frost - layers of acoustic folk and hazy electronica(November 05, 2014)
There has always been alt-folk, nothing like current material described as alt-folk but alt-folk nonetheless. Over time it has morphed and moved, slipped into slumber and re-invented itself. Today, alt-folk takes on a different mantle from that it wore in the 60’s and 70’s, a change that affords a newness as it continues its journey and demands revised visions, yet it persists and grows. Listening to ‘Nameless EP’ from James Frost you’ll find echoes of primal alt-folk examinations interlaced with contemporary explorations, and much as I dislike referencing comparisons with definitive alt-folk artists, no doubt some will find many components to identify.
'Nameless EP' moves through layers of acoustic folk and hazy electronica allied to the occasional sound sample, to build an enveloping presence. Opening with ‘Nameless’ a pastoral memory expounded and delivered by whispering vocals laid across an intricately picked stringed web, it transitions into ‘Nomad’ a desolate recollection of days and places faded away. There’s a hymnal quality to ‘Pride’ with its self-confessing honesty laced with imposing keyboards and wistful, chanted harmonies, ‘Visitors’ offers its darkly intimidating narrative over ominous percussive power, and then comes the intensity of ‘Rolling Thunder’ and the darkness increases, with distorted vocals, questing lyric and haunting backing vocals.
‘Nameless EP’ surely heralds an album. The scope of this short voyage in Frost’s work begs your attention and cannot do other than whet the appetite for a wider involvement.
Find the man and his music here: soundcloud.com/jamesfrostmusic
Reviewer: Tim Carroll