Category: Joshua Hyslop

TV Thursday: Joshua Hyslop
brings dark beauty, innocence to a Leonard Cohen classic.

August 4th, 2011 — 06:54 pm

Sometimes it pays to dig a bit deeper. And that’s how I discovered this surprisingly innocent, almost delicate cover of Leonard Cohen’s Tonight Will Be Fine from new Canadian whippersnapper Joshua Hyslop, whose total studio output to date appears to be Cold Wind, an absolutely mesmerizing EP of originals released in July of this year.

But if this is only the beginning, man, we’re in for a sweet ride from here.

The EP is amazing, with rich production wrapped around fluid arrangements of the kinds of songs only the young people can get away with; his press release compares him to Sufjan, Damien Rice, and Iron and Wine aptly; I hear these and something much more dreamy and poppy, plus Train, William Fitzsimmons, and other college radio indiepop radio standbys, especially in the production, and – more subtly – in the crescendoes of sound and emotion which crash through these dark, rich folkpop landscapes and dreams, pulling at your comfort, offering an unsettled, compromised resolution, until We Have Seen, a triumphant anthem of acceptance, hope and peace, ends the set.

The cover, of a song most recently taken on by Teddy Thompson back in 2006, comes from a Naked Jams session recorded almost two years ago; the bare-bones voice and solo guitar are more akin to the stripped down emotion of a slightly younger, somewhat lighter Bon Iver or Ray LaMontagne. And the solo performance is so powerful, even though I love the dynamic of the EP, I can’t help but hope for some middle ground in the next round.

Still, in both solo and produced forms, Hyslop comes out of nowhere, and hits you right between the eyes. Give Cold Wind a shot the right way, by listening to the full album stream below from start to finish; you’ll not regret it, and you’ll probably buy it. But first, listen.

3 comments » | Joshua Hyslop, New Artists Old Songs, YouTube