David Knowles is a singer-songwriter based in Edinburgh. Having recently released a four song taster EP entitled ‘The Alchemist’, his musical style has been compared to that of Ray Lamontagne and Damien Rice to name but a few. He takes lyrical inspiration from some of the classically torn and misunderstood men of literature, such as Jack Kerouac, Oscar Wilde and Hunter Thompson. Constantly inspired by his unrelenting need to travel and explore, his use of instrumentation and the subject of his songs are almost documenting his path of discovery. I know what you’re thinking this can’t be anything but good.
The first song on the EP, ‘The Alchemist’ (of the same name) is trying to be something it isn’t. The addition of overwhelming strings and etching digital percussion take away from Knowles natural storytelling ability, captured in his quiet worn voice. Unless of course, he is trying to move away from the lyrical subject, which after reading his online profile, I am nearly sure he isn’t.
‘On the Road’ has a fabulously loose guitar intro, which continues throughout giving it a Jeff Buckley feel. Knowles voices takes over laced in a nineties rock ballad beat. There is even a little Cobain style drone in his voice near the end. This should be the headliner. Simplified, lyrical contemplation, with an easy listening guitar riff that would placate any nineties baby.
The next song on the EP is called ‘Satisfy My Soul’. Knowles stays true to his acoustic abilities and plays out solo this extremely blues-inspired song, evident in the down tuned guitar and bass heavy chords. This is a brilliant showcase of his range and playing abilities.
Finally after listening to ‘The Air You Breathe’ you can see how he has been compared to the likes of Damien Rice. This song is subtly sad. A brilliantly building escapade. Which perfectly describes this EP. The soft tones of the live session put the EP perfectly to bed.
David Knowles certainly has the bones of a great album. I am looking forward to having a listen to the finished product and hearing more of his own sound. You can experience Mr. Knowles for yourself as he embarks on some “Live in your Living Room” shows for fans and taking in Lanark, Liverpool and London as well as Wexford in Ireland and Amsterdam in the Netherlands. Knowles is also due to perform at the Bedford in Balham, south-west London on 30th March.