I Remember – Eddy Mann (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

If the last couple of singles from Eddy Mann have highlighted his deft and delicate side, his ability to lay back and spin some fantastic sentiments, I Remember, shows a slightly different aspect. Not that it doesn’t ooze with his clever songwriting and attention to detail, it is just that this time out, the initial focus, for the listener at least, is a stomping groove, a confident beat and even some squalling, bluesy guitars. This is Eddy taking his usual acoustic goodness and pushing it through a more rock and roll filter.

It is still a song which lyrically talks about faith and devotion, talking about the competing distractions that you find on such a road but like all of his music you can apply the words in any number of ways to your own life. If you listen, then the message is clear. Often his words come across philosophical and poetic but here they are direct and unmistakable in that anthemic and infectious way that gospel music often is. And this is nothing if not a blues-infused, folky-rock take on gospel music.

Often the most simple message is the most effective and this is certainly a more than effective delivery system. I Remember struts and stomps, grooves and grinds, unmistakable and unavoidable. But it is full of fantastic dynamics, the gentle lulls making the stomping grooves even more impactful, the neat, bluesy guitar licks making the squealing, squalling, short but effective solo all the more heightened.

Although Eddy writes songs based on his own journey towards the light and his own experience of faith, his songs are about morality rather than religion. His lyrics are narrative tales, which come from a very personal place but that talk to everyone, no matter what path they are on in life. His songs resonate with the act of staying true to a purpose and living the best life you can according to the values that you hold dear. Something which the world seems to need now, considering events of recent times, perhaps more than ever.

As always, he delivers us something with broad appeal. Musically it grooves enough to keep the rock fraternity happy, it has that deftness and craftsmanship that the folk set will love and its bluesy tones will be well received in those quarters too. And lyrically, depending on where your mind is at, it is either a general reminder to adhere to your own ethical code or more specifically it is a modern-day sonic Psalm.

Now that is mass appeal if ever there was. And with a full album entitled IHS dropping on 19th February, this is the perfect time to explore his fantastic music further.

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