David Williams is a guitarist, singer/songwriter from Canberra, Australia. He has a wide range of styles from Blues to Reggae to Rock ‘n’ Roll. He already has quite a few impressive career highlights beginning in the 70’s when he was at high school – You can read about these his Triple J Profile here.
Moving forward to May 2019 Williams has released his own EP titled ‘This Town’. The EP has 5 tracks and along with Williams (Vocals, Guitars & Harmonica) features the musicianship of locals Craig Marshalsey (Bass) and Donovan Gall (Drums/Percussion). ‘This Town’ was produced, mixed and mastered at ‘The Studio’ in Chapman, Canberra with David Pendragon and Jack Buchanan at the helm.
Williams’s music is inspired by diverse influences (BB King, Ry Cooder, Richie Blackmore and more) I was eager to engage with ‘This Town’ and give my thoughts on the EP…
Track 1: This Town – Obviously the title track for the EP and a well-earned place. The theme highlighting the plight of homeless people in Canberra. I loved this track right from the get-go! It’s story suckers you in and can relate it to a town we’ve lived in. Williams has an engaging vocal timbre giving a unique colour and personality to the song itself. The intro has muted instrumentals highlighting the vocals before both engage in a mixed equality before a ‘piste de resistance’ moment ending in outstanding ride on the fretboard of Williams’s guitar. Brilliant!
Track 2: Sometimes You Win, Sometimes You Lose – Well the genre of this track was an utter surprise after the last one and was a bit confusing to listen too. It appears a complex instrumental arrangement was trying to hold up a simplistic vocal one and it didn’t quite get there. Although this is true of the genre ‘rock-steady’ – mismatched beats and the instruments bearing the weight, unfortunately I found that they all but swallowed the vocals. When looking at them as individual entities though they are both likeable enough and have appeal for the wider audience.
Track 3: Game of Life – A cruisy little Jazz/Swing number. Captivating rhythm accompanied by short and punchy vocal’s. After listening to the tones in this track I feel a little as though Elvis has been in the building. Again, we get to enjoy Williams’s fantastic skill on guitar with an interlude at 1:55 where the focus is solely on the sweet sounds he has mastered on his instrument. This track was a lot of fun to listen too and I couldn’t help but groove my way through the experience.
Track 4: Ain’t Gonna Be Your Fool – A real statement piece both musically and vocally, the strength in both transferring dark, dirty and gritty tones and imaginings to the listener. It’s evident that someone has been scorned. I am not going to say any more regarding this track because I think you should listen for yourself to the ‘beauty that lies within’ – Just Outstanding!!
Track 5: There You Go – I’m sure Williams just said – ‘let’s try another genre just to really mix it up!!’ He brings us forward and explores a little of that 80’s sound – think ‘Jessie’s Girl’ by Rick Springfield. Starting at level ‘A’ it never really moves beyond and stays monotone by comparison to the other tracks. I don’t think this is a bad thing because it’s a true representation of the style of song and it’s a light and airy ending to the EP although the lyrics depending on interpretation could be considered less than airy.
Overall, I’ve enjoyed having a listen to ‘This Town’ and I believe it’s got a wide audience appeal in general.
David Williams has given us insight to what makes him the artist that he is and shown us that he is willing to experiment with a wide range of genres. An experiment that serves him well. As a vocalist and he is experienced and engaging. As a musician he is at the top of his game in relation to skill sets and delivery. One mustn’t forget the overall arrangement in which both Marshalsey and Gall should also be credited.
‘This Town’ is available for digital download on CD Baby and available on popular streaming Platforms.
Review Score 3.5/5
(This Town EP Composite Cover Credit to Mark Turner @ markturnerimages (bottom left), Gordon Simmons (top right), David Williams (top left), and an anonymous third-party (bottom right))