Richard Griffith – Fading Blue EP

Welch singer-songwriter, producer, and guitarist Richard Griffith has released his debut EP, “Fading Blue“. This concise, four-track project is a silky blend of jazz, soul, and hip-hop elements; an impressive introduction to the 21-year-old artist, especially considering it was written, recorded, produced, and mixed all by Griffith in his spare time while studying at Oxford.

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Calming and yet still relatively compelling, Richard Griffith‘s “Fading Blue” is reminiscent of an evening out at the jazz lounge. As “Night” kicks off the EP, a wave of crisp, subtle percussion and Herbie Hancock-esque keys indicate a distinctly vintage undertone, with the music remaining only as modern as it needs to be in order to still sound fresh. There’s no doubt that Jazz is a dominant force here, but there is a careful balance being struck between old and new school. Contemporary influences like Stones Throw shine through on the choppy shuffle of tracks like “Movement”, while boppy, bluesy guitar solos and swelling vocal harmonies across the project deliver a steady dose of nostalgia.

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On his debut “Fading Blue EP”, Richard Griffith is like a one-man-band performing at a jazz bar… talented, easy on the ears, and yet susceptible to fading into the background.

As I mentioned a moment ago, this EP is relatively compelling. While it’s anything but boring, Richard’s airy, sometimes placid vocal style has the ability to lull the listener into a bit of a trance. That’s not to say it isn’t a contented trance, nor is it to say the singing here isn’t impressive – it is. But, for a short ride clocking in at around 15 minutes, “Fading Blue” isn’t exactly a roller coaster. Lyrically, we get a similar balance of highlights and lowlights, with simplicity being the name of the game, for better and for worse. On “Tide” and “Lost”, this simplicity takes the form of repetition in a way that becomes cumbersome, while the poetic candor of songs like “Night” and “Movement” – with lyrics like “Hold the night in such regard, with the sights and the sounds. Falls easily apart, falls apart” – is pure and refreshing.

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All in all, Richard Griffith has pulled off a very respectable DIY victory with “Fading Blue”. The cool jazziness and warm production here add a surge of individuality to the soul-saturated R&B of today, making for a figuratively loud, yet musically hushed introduction from this up-and-comer.

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This EP was sent to us via HumanHuman where we randomly pick once a week an album or EP to review. Want to know more about how to submit music? Check our dedicated page!

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