Hailing from the USA, Ron Pope is an upcoming singer songwriter, with almost 2 million single sales to his name. As independent artists go, he is a success story of the ‘bedroom’ musician of the 21st Century. Having wrote and played many instruments and vocals for his songs, this release is a little different.
The EP came out on the 20th of July. Made up of 3 tracks, the single, the remix, and the cover. This release is a daring move and brings back B Sides, something that is sorely lacking from a lot of artists these days. Nevertheless, how does it sound.
The first track of the EP features Hannah Trigwell, titled ‘Nothing’, it is a piano fronted Bruno Mars styled track. A predictable structure means the rhythm kicks in for the chorus, with a slight bit of side-chaining from the kick on the bass, a CR78 possibly sound buried underneath. As a breakup song, it tries to replicate the duelling nature of Gotye’s ‘Somebody that I Use to Know’ yet fails miserably to capture the balance of genuine breakup pain that Gotye was able to. Lick My Wounds (Memoryy Remix) takes the original; video below; and reinterprets it as a highly curated electronic synth pop number. Various elements from the original spring up and . The remix works quite well, it doesn’t feel awkward (aside from the intro) and almost feels like another version of the song its own right. Glassy 80s synth pop meets Ron Pope in this EP extra.
The final track is a reinterpretation/cover of on LCD Soundsystem’s, ‘New York, I love You But You’re Bringing Me Down’. Starting with a gentle violin quartet building on top of swelling guitar and simple hi-hat, it is somewhat removed from the original source material, but not too far. There’s a slight Richard Hawley vibe with the combination of instruments. Ron’s vocal sits on top of the band comfortably, and he sounds in his element. What this shows is that James Murphy is a great song writer, and Ron Pope can deliver a smooth vocal performance. However the EP does not show Ron Pope as a songwriter, and if his press release is to be believed then this release is a gigantic misstep. As a single, Nothing is simply not strong enough to stand on its own, as part of a lead EP it makes even less. To then have a remix surpass the only other song on the EP written by the singer does not bode well either. Also the press release states Pope has a ‘raspy’ voice, yet it is distinctly creamy and smooth.
Overall, the remix and cover work well, but they do not show Ron Pope as the artist he is aiming to be, and Nothing is simply not powerful to show that either.
- Nothing Ft Hannah Trigwell
- Lick My Wounds (Memoryy Remix)
- New York, I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down (LCD Soundsystem cover)
Ron is playing a few dates in the next few days:
UK Tour Summer 2014
Jul 23 O2 Academy 2 Liverpool, United Kingdom
Jul 24 Liquid Room Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Jul 25 Brudenell Social Club Leeds, United Kingdom