Thursdays With J.R. – Wild Child

Thursdays with J.R. is our new weekly column from lifelong musician and lifelong-er music fan J.R. McIntire, drummer of Arctic Char and multi-instrumentalist on more projects than we have bandwidth to list.

Anyone who knows me, knows I love a good “room sound” on a recording.  Sometimes you get this naturally with a raw recording and sometimes artists go for this sound.  It literally puts you IN the room.  This week’s song sits you down next to the guitar and lets you just be.  I spun “Photographs” by Wild Child and was transported to the room where it happened.  The song starts off with room ambience before the guitar begins ever so slightly, pulling you into what will happen next.  Gentle sounds of the Rhodes piano guide you into the beautiful and gentle vocals.  They are complimented with a keyboard or guitar pedal that sounds almost sick, trying to fight its way into the song.  The chorus is catchy and layered with horns.  Rimshots, hand claps and snaps change the dynamic of verse two.  The vocals become syncopated and full of attitude before we glide into the chorus again.  The horns add so much here, not what you expect when the song begins so sparse.  There are also subtle strings and keys that round out the sound.  The sick guitar effect comes back at the end to stake its claim, it never overwhelms but keeps you interested.  This song will surprise you all the while making you feel like you’ve heard it before as the chorus has a familiarity even after the first spin.  Highly recommend this tune, starts simple and ends simply fantastic.

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