Music review: John Oakes’ ‘Songwriter’ – “ignites both anguish and rapture”


Album review: Songwriter
Artist: John Oakes

‘Songwriter’ is an album I’d happily feel sad to. It’s Simon & Garfunkel folk rock instrumentals meets the soothing vocals of R.E.M, encompassing a sorrowing wisdom that ignites both anguish and rapture (It Cannot Be).

As far as lyrics go Oakes is a natural, and poetical, storyteller. Accompanied by guitar, piano and harmonica, the album takes you from the back streets of Paris (The Evacuee) to the remote lands of sea ports (Through the Years). He echoes the visceral capabilities of Laura Marling in this regard, and his songs transport you through memorial states, but ultimately offers solace.

Songwriter is all very ‘misery loves company’, but in a very tranquil and redemptive fashion.