Thoughtful and quiet, charged and uplifting, emotional and full of heart – those are just some words that can be used to describe this upcoming release. Heartwarming at its core and surrounded with plentiful yet masterfully minimal instrumentation, this offers a great listening pleasure. Read on to learn more about “Darling Ocean” the EP and the artist!
Little Drum is a music project brought to life by a trio of friends who have spent years working on various projects in the past, Jack Savoretty, Imelda May and Faithless among others. The trio are Matty Benbrook, Pauline Taylor and Donny Little, joined over shared enthusiasm and love for soulful genres like folk and blues with added spark of electronica. All of the aforementioned seeps into the sound of Little Drum, resulting in some of the softest and gentlest sounds with emphasis on what’s on the soul.
“Pauline and I have known each other since the mid 90’s when we worked with a record label, Cheeky Records who had Faithless signed to them, we ended working with them both live and in the studio. From this we both ended up signed with the label, Pauline as solo artist and me with the band I had called Skinny. Through this we both ended up in the world of songwriting, getting cuts with Dido, Paolo Nutini, Mel C and many more.Matty Benbrook
We met Donny around 2005 as he played guitar with Paolo Nutini and I was working extensively with Paolo at the time writing and producing . We all bonded and had very similar outlooks and inspirations. In about 2014 we finally decided we should put some music together ourselves, so the EP began and then it stopped for 5 years as Donny moved to the states, then he moved back, we started up then covid happened. Anyway here we are now with an ep being released, first of 3 planned so far and we have a few choice covers coming soon too.”
That’s right, the group will release their debut EP this Friday October 15! Channeling inspirations coming from both music and their life into the first release, “Darling Ocean” (their debut single ad only track released so far) is a sweet-sounding window opening into the world of Little Drum with stories crafted from their life experiences and love for their home town London. The EP holds four tracks, which all share the soft gentle tonality with vocals that sound bluesy and true to heart.
The album begins with its title track “Darling Ocean”, immediately surrounding with warm humming vocals that join the layered sound. The slow guitar melodies take the center stage along with the singer telling his story through the pleasantly hazy prism. His voice feels captivating and soulful at his tender, dreamy and slightly quivering presentation.
“Darling Ocean is a song about giving in to and overcoming your fears. Of diving in and facing the unknown.”
The next song quickly picks up pace with a foot-stomping rhythm and similarly rhythmic guitar play. Determination interlaced with soul and love, the song brings together choral bits and strings to create a truly inspiring and hopeful sound – chanting “Love is the Key to it all!” The most upbeat song of the EP for sure!
“Love is the key is a simple message. I always try hard to shake off other peoples bullshit. Social media has let us into the heads of some deeply unhappy people who feel the need to hurt others.Why would anybody want to live like that? Must be exhausting.”
Slow floating guitar melodies in contrast to prominent percussion, “Runner” holds a certain kind of pushing onwards even when tired feeling. It’s a song about love and relationships, more specifically doubt and questioning your choices:
“Runner. Sometimes when first getting into a new relationship one person will fall harder and faster. The other will be more cautious. It’s about that really.”
Last song of the EP, “Traffic and the Rain” is an introspective song carried on by vibrant guitar chords that echo along with the singer’s voice. Growing into anthemic levels and falling into the quiet stripped state, this song feels like an embodiment of a not so joyful day spent unraveling the unhappy thoughts and emotions in your mind.
“Traffic and the Rain is the idea that there’s always someone having a way better time than us and we don’t fully appreciate what and who we have until it’s lost.”
Full of beautiful melodies, emotions and some of the most soulful vocals, “Darling Ocean” is an EP most welcome for spending a cozy rainy day. There’s plenty of depth in each song for the heart, wonderful and pleasing instrumentation for ears and a serene sense for the mind. If you love folk or soul, enjoy the stripped-back organic sound or just adore the sound of acoustic guitar, there’s plenty and more in this release!
Don’t forget to support this project and to follow on Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, and Spotify. You can obviously find it in the following Playlists: Less Than 1,000 Followers, Fresh Singles, Chill – Folk – Acoustic, 12 New Songs This Week, 12 New Songs This Week, and Autumn Acoustic.
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