For every artist in the top 40, maybe even the top 100, there are a thousand artists waiting to impress us. My maths is shaky, so don’t quote those stats, but my ears I’m pretty sure are doing ok. Thomas Ashby with his latest E.P Eat My Heart/Little Us is one of the things making giving them smiles.
Thomas Ashby is my one to watch this year, and recently featured in the themusicbit.co.uk’s Welcome To 2015 series. Eat My Heart/Little Us is quite delightful, delivered by acoustic guitars, piano, bass drum and even the occasional banjo or xylophone. All of these are played by Thomas and they help Thomas Ashby to tell stories in a touching, heart-warming and intelligent way.
It all starts with Eat My Heart. Lively and warm, Eat My Heart carries you with it as it persuades your feet to stamp. Joined by an instantly memorable chorus, a well-placed breakdown keeps Eat My Heart alive in your ears as even a little banjo creeps in. Little Us changes this energy with a tender subdued opening. Gradually it grows and expands as a story grows – hitting you right in that warm thing next to your lungs. At it’s end it’s a lively and warm beast (like a squirrel?), but still with that same tenderness. Aptly, Bittersweet End closes the E.P, told via a simple acoustic guitar. Bittersweet End showcases how Thomas can re-tell our world, elements reflecting it as it is but also making it sound finer.
Thomas Ashby isn’t reinventing the wheel here. However the place it takes you to and the road you travel on make this E.P an ideal travel companion. This three track E.P, released at the close of 2014, cries out for a full live performance and sharing with an audience.
8 / 10