Reviews

From a blog by the  name of: Animal My Soul

On the Syd Barrett song If it’s in you from ‘The Madcap Laughs’, there’s a great moment at the beginning when he makes a hash of hitting the right note and you here him saying in an agitated state:   ” …………look you know….. I’ll start again,  I’ll start again…its not …. it’s just the fact , you know, of going through it…… I mean if you if we could cut…* It’s great that the producer (Roger Waters here, I think) had the sense to keep this in as it gives an insight on how wired and fraught this recording session must have been.

Chad Hagans certainly doesn’t sound anywhere near as on edge but something in the intensity of his home produced debut EP (Morning Stories) made me think of Syd. This, admittedly tenuous, connection I made when listening to the song Summer’s Child where he sings: “Do you ever feel like nothing is real, Like your body is steel, As if you have no feelings inside your chest, As if your life is broken and it’s time to rest” while a  line from the song ‘Someday “Exhale the pain, keep yourself insane” could easily have been written with Syd in mind (but I’m sure wasn’t!).

Chad from New York USA (unlike Syd from Oxford,UK)  is, so far as I can make out, a sorted out individual. This I conclude from the fact that he has the courage and determination to take the plunge and go public with this record. The seven track EP can be downloaded for free from Bandcamp.

The  inevitable lo-fi quality gives the recording a slightly muffled quality but his introspective acoustic ballads have a very personal flavour that I warmed to immediately.  He sings mainly of relationships in which there is as much anguish as joy but despite this the tone is more honest and reflective than deliberately downbeat.

Lyrically , the songs could me more varied – the line “everything will be alright” appears in three separate songs as if trying to convince us (or himself) that all is well!   On My My,  this line softens the impact of the words  ”You’re my favorite bad dream – You’re a nightmare” when to my ears it would have  been better to let the harder message  stand unadorned.

The single from the EP,  Into The Blue, is easily the best song, one of two that are not completely solo – Chris Morin plays lead guitar. This has a lovely , gentle melody where the plaintive lines  “Let me down easy if you decide to go / Like the wind on your face away I’ll blow” seem full of sensitivity and prove that this is a new singer who deserves some love .

 

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Not a Thing to Believe In:

A collection of soft spoken miniature gems with washes of acoustic brilliance and an all around melancholy feel that has the ability to alter any perception that you may have on something that has been stuck in your head. In simpler terms it makes you think about things, and think about them differently. A very compelling debut EP; this 7 song cycle has been in the works for quite some time, so I feel as if I am a part of some of these songs. Into the Blue is the ender and by far the best track, the demo is a personal favorite, and the single/album version is the same but just a little more happening. The best part about this EP is that these songs will be accessible to any listener for years to come, and this only proves that we should be looking out for future releases by Chad Hagans.

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