Don’t you just love it when one of your favourite up and coming artists truly comes of age? You always knew they were great but then they produce something which deserves to pull in the crowds. The handmade limited edition CDs and numbered 7” singles remind you of a time when it seemed like nobody else knew. Well, that time is here for Tom Williams and his boat. A previous focus for FUTUREMUSIC and one of our select band of interviewees, Tom is soon to release his rather magnificent new EP, ‘See My Evil’. You’ll be wanting one.
The opening salvo of ‘See My Evil’ and ‘Get Older’ sound like a grubby Arcade Fire after a night in a dark room with a fine malt, headphones and a copy of Jeff Buckley’s ‘(Sketches For) My Sweetheart The Drunk’. It has a claustrophobic, almost malevolent swagger at times and ‘Get Older’ really gets inside your head. Be careful if listening via earphones, you may end up slightly on edge. ‘Strong Wheels’ is a grittier take on the narrative strum of old, propelled forth by a perpetual bass line which evokes the thrum of a cruising engine as Tom sings “me in my car, in the snow, off my head.”
Just when it feels like Tom Williams & The Boat have sailed into stormier waters (I know, I can’t believe I just typed that either) matters mellow with ‘In Love’, which shuffles through its 136 seconds rather serenely, describing love lived out through digital pictures, and the closing track, ‘Kick The Cat’. A remarkable paean to Cat Bin Lady, this track considers how we’ve all done something reckless and…oh, alright. It’s not about Cat Bin Lady. Mournful violin, sparse piano and the most emotive vocal of the five make this a rather fine way to bow out of what is Tom Williams & The Boat’s most accomplished release to date. None of the slightly shambling charm of old has gone, but the musical nous and out and out confidence borne of experience and a shit hot record collection has moved this marvellous band on another level.
You can pre-order ‘See My Evil’ EP and receive an immediate high quality download by visiting Tom’s site here. If this review is not enough to sway you, you can download the title track for free just to confirm that you really, really should be buying this. Click and buy, come on now.