Jay Fraser is a solo roots artist originally from Tasmania and currently based in London. This is his third album and it documents his journey from his home in Australia to the other side of the world. The album has the feeling of a travel diary with different geographical vibes and atmospheric soundscapes explored across the album.
Jay Fraser puts out a vibrant country / roots sound sounding somewhere between John Butler and Angus Stone. Over the tracks Jay manages to create a sound that can be energetic and catchy while having a laid back and relaxed vibe at the same time. With some very minimalist musical arrangements he is able to produce a big sound with a lot of activity and life. Above all Mr Fraser has put out a country sound that has an unmistakable Australian vibe, and in some cases making you feel as if you are taking a journey around Australia. This gives the music a rather authentic feel.
The album opens with The Price on my head, an energetic country/roots tune that has a strong atmospheric vibe. The song races around making it feel as if you are traveling around at a great speed. That’s how we roll has a more poppy feel to it armed with some catchy riffs and some nice hand clapping to keep the energy up.
Walking on a fine line is a major stand out track, full of raw energy and life. There is a strong atmospheric vibe making you feel like you are out on a dusty road in the middle of the outback. The vibe of the song is further enhanced by the country style harmonica that hits all the right notes.
Four strong winds is a slow and melancholy tune that is very stripped back. There is a strong country vibe making you feel like you are out in a small and isolated country town. The simple guitars allow Jay’s vocals to be fully realised as he softly delivers the lines with a heap of passion, emotion and colour. The slow but twangy harmonics in place of a chorus adds to the vibe.
The album closes with the laid back roots Acland Street. Unlike the previous songs which have a strong country / outback vibe this one takes on more of an urban inner city feel. The lyrics backed by the simple guitar paint a vibrant picture of inner-city Melbourne.
This is a great collection of tunes. Each of the 10 tracks stand up on their own as solid tunes and pieced together create great imagery almost like a traveling journal across the world. Using rather minimal musical arrangements Mr Fraser is able to put out a lot of colour and vibes in each track topped with some sharp lyrics and soulful delivery.