Freya Ward is new to the folk scene. But when you listen to the quality of her music, you would think she has been around for much longer.
Ward’s journey into the world of music is an interesting and inspiring one. She explains, “For years, I was too terrified to play people my music. Social media would have me believe everybody else was glistening with confidence – when the idea of getting up in front of people and playing them my songs – that up until now, nobody had heard – made my hands shake, my legs shake, my mouth turn dry and my voice constrict”.
6 months later, a life-changing open mic night resulted in her finding her voice. From there she has gone from strength to strength and has now released her debut EP By The Sea.
This EP opens up with “I Followed a Bird.” This track highlights everything that makes the music of Freya Ward stand out. Its intro gently pulls you in with the use of a captivating fingerpicking style on her guitar. Then her beautiful vocals come in which float effortlessly along all the way to the song’s end. They are used to share words that provoke imagery as the lines, “I followed a bird, and it led me to pastures new / And it showed me the sky was blue, when all I could see was grey,” highlight.
“By The Sea” shows off more of Ward’s beautiful vocals and her storytelling quality. It is easy to become lost in her voice as she shares lines such as, “But there’s no knowing where on this earth she’ll be / And so, for now, your heart remains shackled to this place / And you’ll be here, right here / Waiting by the sea, the sea / Waiting by the sea, the sea.”
Next up is “Hourglass” which has all of the same qualities as the tracks before it. However, it is her guitar skills which stand out the most due to her mesmerizing fingerpicking technique.
The EP saves the best for last with “Won’t You Take Me Home.” Her guitar projects a much sunnier feel compared to the other tracks. Ward’s effortless vocals again stand out as well as her songwriting. Her voice, like the music, has more warmth to it that is so easy on the ears. It is used to perfection to share its infectious hook “Oh darling if I ask you, please / Won’t you take me home? Won’t you take me home? / It’s been too long since I’ve been gone / And I am, tired in my bones, I’m tired in my bones / I don’t know how to carry on so won’t you / Won’t you take me home? / Won’t you take me home?”
Freya Ward came through personal challenges to give us a beautiful EP called ‘By The Sea’
Overall, By The Sea is an impressive collection of songs by Freya Ward. Her songwriting style and guitar technique are too refined to be this new to the scene. If she is this good now, how will she sound a few years down the road?
Even though Ward has released an impressive debut EP, she is already working on new material. There is something about this singer-songwriter and can predict that 2019 will result in something special.