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Drew Davies - You're The Only One (AD1)

31 January 2024

I was about to say that it seems only music made under the big skies of America can capture the sonic scope and dynamic, wide-screen cinematics found here. And then I checked the bio and found out that Drew Davies hails from the North Yorkshire Moors in the UK (though has now made his way to Glasgow after a stint in that there London Town.) So, maybe what I initially took for the sound of music channeling empty midwest landscapes and star-strewn canopy is the sound of a more homegrown, desolate, windswept northern climes. Far from being Americana, this is Britainicana…if that is even a thing.

“You’re The Only One,” is a song built on shimmering sonics and chiming guitars, layers of tones and textures, each in their own right thin sonic strands but when taken as a whole, creating a rich, wide-screen musical tapestry.

And the more I listen to it the more I wonder how I got it so wrong, how I thought this music must be the product from an ocean away. All music is, consciously or otherwise, built on what has gone before, and echoing away in the background, I can hear the distant sound of the “Big Music” of the UK’s post-punk/New pop past. Music that I grew up on. Within the musical strands of this song, you can just about detect the delicate sonic thumbprint of bands like Echo and the Bunnymen and, especially in the play-off between that resonant voice and that anthemic soundscape, the criminally under rated Power of Dreams (check them out, you can thank me later.)

I love music that manages to be anthemic without being obvious, that is writ large without being bombastic, that uses delicacy as a strength, that is built from multiple, mellifluous song strands rather than relying on velocity and volume to make the point. Who knew that it was virtually on my doorstep all the time?