Album Reviews

Kevin Nolan – Fredrick & the Golden Dawn – Album Review

Album Front Cover-pdf-001

“These are wonder-tales, this album sort of fills the mold of an extreme sensibility, it’s in a way a bad reaction to something I ate, I mean emotionally. It’s a refusal to accept the place in which I found myself, a kind of revolt. This album is for those who want to reach outside somehow” – Kevin Nolan

Kevin Nolan is an Irish multi instrumentalist and singer who has recently released his first album ‘Fredrick & the Golden Dawn’. This is an unusual collection of songs drawing influences from a wide spectrum of music, such as Tom Waits, Nick Cave, Steve Reich, Flaming Lips and Man Man among others. It’s quite novel for an Irish artist not to follow the traditional singer song writers route, and the diversity in this collection of songs is what sets it apart. There’s a feeling of insecurity from one song to the next, that you’re never quite sure where they will go, or how they will develop.

The choice of instruments includes guitar, bass, organs, piano and a wide spectrum of percussion sounds. The arrangements rarely repeat between tracks and even Nolan’s vocal finds a way to morph, making each track quite unique.  The first single off the album is Aubade which is a piano track featuring guest vocals from Julie Feeney. It is a simple and sad offering, with the slow piano and the pair of voices working well off each other.

The song is atypical of the rest of the album, as what unites the other tracks is a sense of exuberance and fun. The influences on his music are obvious and he doesn’t hide from them. For a debut album, this is quite a statement of intent and one of the more playful and wide reaching Irish albums you are likely to hear this year.

Tracklisting :
1. Blood Wedding
2. Ctrl
3. Splinter
4. Last Days Of Harry Carey
5. Ballade to St. Dymphna
6. The Guess
7. Drowning
8. Peggy Sue
9. Oil On Canvas
10. Aubade Featuring Julie Feeney

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