Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Ken's Top 10 of 2016 - #9: Marlon Williams - S/T

Marlon Williams is part of this odd (but fantastic) wave of Americana coming out of Australia and New Zealand. His debut solo album came out way back in February and it's been in my regular rotation ever since. While there is a ton of country/folk albums out these days, what really makes Williams stand out is his voice. He could easily be one of the new crooners that pop up on The Voice or American Idol, but instead he's playing small clubs doing the singer-songwriter thing. There are the more upbeat songs like the album opener, "Hello Miss Lonesome" and the second song "After All," but the true standout is the moody "Dark Child." Williams is best when he's crooning a dark, melancholy tale. Plus, the indie rock style feedback that is just hinted at in the background comes out in full force towards the end. "Strange Things" is the closest thing the album comes to a traditional country song with it's haunting chorus. No one is currently doing the Americana thing like Marlon Williams. For a genre based in tradition for decades, hearing a voice this unique is a rare gift.

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