Oh, we’ve been waiting for this one. Admittedly, we weren’t very in-the-know for Jack Garratt initially (our entry into his music was the Pop-Rock-esque ‘Weathered’, which — while still our least-favourite — we’ve come to enjoy); following a listen to ‘The Love You’re Given’, it was as if the clouds below the heavens opened up and invited us into Garratt’s greatness — and we couldn’t get enough from that point on. Today, he releases his debut album Phase, which sees him mixing a few tracks we’ve already heard on his previous two EPs (Remnants and Synesthesiac) with new cuts to create a cohesive album that we’ve been playing on a continuous loop since it became available at midnight. Seriously*.
First off, Phase‘s intro, ‘Coalesce (Synesthesia Pt. II)’, immediately connected us to the album from an emotional standpoint (as did the other ‘Synesthesia’ tracks on the Deluxe version, thanks to the aforementioned EPs…this was a recurring theme for us through the full listen). This was then followed by 2015’s ‘Breathe Life‘, a new track titled ‘Far Cry’ and then ‘Weathered‘…and ‘Worry‘…and ‘The Love You’re Given’ — the point is, there is literally not one instance did we want to hit the pause button. All of his music — which we can’t even put into a particular genre but incorporates the best from Deep House (and several other Electronic elements), soul R&B, Blues and Alternative — is on a level of creativity and originality that connects with us on so many different levels. The newer tracks simply continue that for an absolutely remarkable and (potentially) timeless release.
The lyrics are dope as well, if not slightly on the creep side when one truly dissects them. For example, on (our favourite) ‘The Love You’re Given’, we hear lines like “I promise if you’re gonna lock me out, I will stay as your ghost/but if you take the love you’re given, I will leave you alone”. On ‘I Know All What I Do’, he says much the same: “If I ever leave you, eyes will remain.” Like we said, slight-creep in regards to whatever relationship(s) he’s pulling from in his writing. [This is, of course, not the only topic brought forth on Phase.]
ALSO: It gets us purely amped for his forthcoming live shows and festival appearances as well.
Overall, we say that:
- If you’re already a Jack Garratt fan, you’re going to love this album, and;
- If you’re not familiar with Jack Garratt, you’re — at the very least — going to enjoy tried-and-true singles from the album like ‘Weathered’. Also;
- There’s no such thing as a person who doesn’t like Jack Garratt. It’s impossible.
*We’re really not trying to get into the various claims about this man’s career (such as whether or not Island Records gave him a golden brick road to fame and success, which is kind of their job, anyway), or the fact that certain critics have described his sound as, um…bland. Simple responses: with or without a solid machine behind him, you can deny his talent as a vocalist, songwriter and multi-talented producer and instrumentalist…and no, bland he is not.