Jonny Faith – Sundial (Tru Thoughts, 2015)
Every once in a while, there comes a record whose title – and the titles of its musical contents – manages to encompass its sound and feeling so effortlessly and unambiguously that you end up applauding both the musical mastery of the artist and their ease at achieving such coherency.
‘Sundial’ is Jonny Faith’s first full-length and it comes out on a label we have come to associate with effortless coherency, namely Tru Thoughts. It’s a 10-track expedition throughout a tender but somehow mature area that manages to veer between earthly and cosmic within each and every composition.
Faith himself is originally from Edinburgh but has been residing in sunny Australia for the past decade. Now I’ve never been to Australia myself but, if I had to imagine it, ‘Sundial’ would be the soundtrack to unequivocally jump-start my imagination and lead it into magical territories.
Jonny Faith‘s roots are in playing hip hop, jungle, drum & bass and reggae so one might be suprised to play ‘Sundial’ and be instantly wrapped in lush warmth and layered melodies. But on a second listen, it becomes obvious that the evident attention to the beats and the smart details in the construction of said warm, lush beats – everything that makes ‘Sundial’ such a laid-back joy to listen to – could only have come from someone with diverse influences and experiences.
Just listen to ‘The Calm Before’ on big headphones and follow the careful layering of sounds coming in and out of the picture, constantly communicating and playing around with each other.
My first instinct when listening to ‘Sundial’ was to compare its sound’s aesthetic to the one found in Bonobo’s always stellar production, but then I realized that ‘comparing’ would the wrong approach. Take Bonobo as a mere reference instead of a comparison, for Jonny Faith’s luscious debut is guided by its own imaginative accents .
Listen to Jonny Faith’s ‘Sundial’ and marvel at the appropriateness of each of the tracks’ names below.
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