Poejazzi Live Session – Will Adlard – SomehowOctober 27th, 2014 by Poejazzi
Will Adlard‘s song Somehow is one of the most emotionally provocative tracks we have heard in a long, long while. Dark and romantic, Somehow sees Will combining blues and folk music to it’s most forgone conclusion: in perfect tandem with each other, never competing or overshadowing the other. Somehow sounds so good you wonder if it is a cover; it’s familiarity is a testament to Will’s ability to know what people want out of a song like this. It is easy and natural on first listen and from personal experience I can say that if you’re ever feeling contemplative, a little sad, or nostalgic this is a song that you will reach for, like a friend in the dark; a comforting presence, an unquestionable source of emotional release. Somehow is deceptively simple, but its circularity, a narrative and melodic thread unworking itself, is interrupted by teasing little crescendoes that build up and lead us right back to where we started, giving the feeling of sadness being completely satiated, not an easy task, something only a few singer songwriters manage, e.g.: icons such as Jeff Buckley and Leonard Cohen, both of whom I would put in the same section as Will Adlard on a playlist.
Somehow is like a really honest conversation, one you would not usually want to have with yourself, but in Somehow honesty is exquisitely painful; you keep wanting to return to it, not in a mawkish, self indulgent, eat all the ice cream and give up kind of way, more in a take a shot of whiskey, turn down the lights and think about it all with some poetic distance kind of way. He is also one of those rarified creatures in the music industry who sound precisely as he does on record as he does live; pitch perfect and tone perfect he knows exactly how to extract feeling from every line he sings. When he played at Poejazzi earlier this year, Somehow, in particular, commanded an almighty hush in the room. Songs as big, and yet intimate, as Somehow, with its expert changes and meandering melody, take up the whole room, as does the timbre and purity of Will’s voice, altogether creating something almost spiritual.
Will used to be in a folksy pop outfit called Patch William, they were nominated for an Ivor Novello in 2010, as relatively unknown and young newcomers it was clearly a big deal. When you hear Will now, years later, as a solo artist, you can see where that magic in terms of songwriting came from, the level of quality is so high it is clear that the Ivor Novello worthy writer is still evolving and is turning into exactly what he is meant to be as an artist, channelling his blues and folk heritage (Will comes from a family of musicians, including his brother who was in Patch William with him and his father, a well respected blues musician) into seamlessly clean and modern soulful music like Somehow.
We have described how much we love Will’s voice, his songwriting and his self described brand of “shadow blues” and we’ve gone a little hard for him in this post, because whilst Poejazzi will not be around for the foreseeable future we really hope acts like Will Adlard stay with you and that you fall as in love with his music as we have and support him throughout what we’re sure could be a long and brilliant career.
Listen to more from Will Adlard here, including one of the best covers of Bob Dylan’s Mama, You’ve Been On My Mind, that we’ve ever heard.