Music You Should Know Review


R D Thomas (AKA Rich Thomas) embarks on a solo musical journey with the release of his debut EP Headlines. He has had a busy career so far as the frontman of the band Brother & Bones, as well as long-term Ben Howard band member. 

Thomas is excited about his new release which he describes as “A musical documentary of sorts, each song recorded at the moment of its completion, with these first takes also being the final performances heard on the record”. It promises to offer a blend of sounds from electronica to folk. All to help showcase his various abilities which include intelligent and poetic lyrics to accompany his multi-instrumentalist skills. 

Headlines open up with its title track. Instantly its atmospheric chilled mood pulls in the listener before Thomas begins his tale with “We’re feeding the kids with the crumbs / From the kings at the table”. When the lyrics are delivered, his tone is gentle and seems effortless. It mirrors its soundtrack, which flows naturally and is allowed to breathe.

“The Way Down” has a lot more to say than its predecessor. Not only does it showcases the songwriting talents by Thomas, but his storytelling qualities too. His voice is gentle and emotive as he shares his words. He does so with a wider range than “Headlines”. He adds a bit of power to his tone when the chorus arrives, especially with the lines “Honey, funny ain’t it honey / how you always lay down / when you’re on the way down”. As it comes to a close, Thomas’ guitar skills are given the opportunity to stand out during a short instrumental moment.

With each track, the calibre of the songwriting and arrangement eclipses its predecessor. So, when “Hope The Medicine Holds It’s Fire” arrives, it produces an unforgettable moment. It begins with Thomas’ intricate guitar style, which yet again creates a soothing mood. His technique continues to shine throughout, delivering as much emotion as his vocals. Both his six-string and his voice have enough space to flow naturally and interweave to perfection when they meet. When he sings, it reflects the tone that has been set. It does so from its opening lines “Hope the medicine hold its fire / Down below and then way up to higher / It’s always darker than I recall / How was I to know”. These words stand out so much, even more, when the song comes to its end.

‘Headlines’ is a captivating EP by R D Thomas. It is the first chapter of his ongoing musical journey

Headlines feel like the first chapter of a larger story. With more releases already planned, we will see how this audio journey will unfold. With such a strong debut already created, his future works will be equally as impressive. Do yourself a favour and give the music by R D Thomas a listen today!

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