Everyone fell in love with Jess & Matt when they competed on ‘The X Factor’ in back in 2015.
Their adorable connection as partners meant they almost always connected on stage.
While the show added several layers of TV production gloss, they have always been folk artists at heart.
Now back with a collection of songs from the ’60s, has the return to folk been a wise decision?
Most songs on this collection sit in the “classics” category. Amazing artists have written and laboured over these songs and have provided generations with memories and many more artists with buckets of inspiration.
To take them on is a challenge in itself, but to do so well is the other half of the battle.
Thankfully their time overseas to create this album has enabled Jess & Matt to do a really good job.
‘The Sound Of Silence’ with Chris Isaak is the highlight on this collection of tunes. Everyone sounds amazing together and coupled with the fact the song is a stunner, it’s a beautiful moment. It harks back to the era where talented vocalists formed supergroups (The Mamas & The Papas, Fleetwood Mac etc) and this isn’t a bad thing. I could have listened to these three voices all day.
The way that Jess & Matt’s voices complement each other on ‘The Boxer’ is really quite special too. They hit the vocal pocket and the production feels balanced and rich. The song itself allows Jess & Matt to shine too which is a sign of a good song in general.
A couple of observations I made throughout the album though leave me wanting a bit more.
Matt’s vocals dominate the majority of songs (which isn’t a bad thing – he has a gorgeous voice) but it relegates Jess almost to backing vocalist duties on several songs.
A bug bear of mine on cover albums is when the production sounds cheap. And on a few of the songs it felt that way again. While I appreciate in this modern day and age of releasing music that budgets can get tight, leave the songs off rather than put them on as it can compromise the story.
It feels like Jess & Matt have returned home and I’m glad to hear their folk and blues influenced songs.
My only hope is that this leads to creating some stunning originals and opens the doors to collaborating with some new artists.
They are undeniably talented and deserve every success.
VERDICT : 3/5.
MUST LISTEN : The Boxer, The Sound Of Silence, Both Sides Now.