Sober Season – You Fool EP

Sober Season’s You Fool EP offers three glorious tracks which weave in and out of various influences. From the opening title track’s first few seconds, ‘You Fool’ has an autumnal warmth to the tone of the guitar that embraces the listener and draws you in. It’s quite clear from the start that while these three tracks aren’t going to last forever, the chances are that they will manage to leave a lasting memory. Vocally, there are hints of Bright Eyes’ Conor Oberst, while the track itself has an arrangement that allows itself to build up into a bold chorus that is as unexpected as it is thrilling. Add to that the squealing, smoky blues of the guitar solo, and you’ve got something quite special here, a track that isn’t afraid to wander from the beaten track from time to time and try something different before heading back to the main path ahead. ‘Paper Tears’ offers a more stripped back sound, with the feel of a campfire song. Upbeat, with a deep melancholy running through it, the track feels as though its power is held in the tension that creates a dynamic energy. This is strengthened all the more by the two vocals, male and female, which then engage with a call-and-response dialogue towards the track’s conclusion. The You Fool EP comes to a close with ‘Grey Day’, featuring for of the trademark Sober Season acoustic guitar tone that acts as the very blood that runs through the veins of the music, reaching far and wide and making sure to bring life to every area. In terms of tone and tune, there is the oh-so-slightest nod to ‘Here Comes The Sun’, but never actually copies or steals. Rather, the guitar feels more informed and influenced, taking the knowledge of much that has gone before and stepping out ahead to forge a new path based on confidence and experience. There’s more of that previous tension, as the music has an upbeat and positive feel, while lyrically there is a bittersweet edge to things. As a closing track, it offers some real fireworks, not least on the chorus, and works well to tie things up in a nice bow and leave the listener feeling particularly satisfied. Satisfied to a point, though, as really once the three tracks are over there is a nagging desire for some more. Admittedly one way of solving this problem is to simply give the EP another play, and what it serves to point out is how welcome a full album from Sober Season would be. This world is always slightly better for having sad, acoustic tinged alternative music that occasionally explodes into huge choruses. Highly recommended.

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