Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
It’s all in the voice when discussing A Different Thread. Well, not all in the voice, but certainly the voice is the first thing that jumps out at me. Robert Jackson is the vocalist and his voice is one of those one in 100 year voices. It is jazzy, bluesy, and also a bit of that standards singer voice from the 40s and 50s. In the vain of Sinatra and Dean Martin. I know that is a lofty comparison, but Jackson’s vocals are in the stratosphere.
Big Crane (Track 1) is the perfect display case for Jackson’s strong and serene voice. This song has a real bluesy and soulful feel to it. A throwback to a bygone era when the vocalist was the focal point of the group. That is not to suggest that the other players are not important, because they are a very integral part of the overall group.
Speaking of the other members of the group, you have Isaac Collier on cello and Alicia Best on fiddle. Jackson also plays the harmonica. The trio is a new construct for this band, but based on the rich sound, it will be a successful formula. The chemistry of all these players is definitely there and quite tangible.
The band experiments with some serious jazz elements on The Same Cloth (Track 4). There are some nice horns on this number and a very minimalistic feeling to it. At times, the song almost fades into a whisper and there is a tremendous amount of feeling and vibe in that open space. Jackson’s vocals are almost delivered in a scat style and it is very effective.
Another EP that shows a tremendous amount of promise and makes me long for more. The talent is effervescing all over the place, but not a drop is wasted. A Different Thread is very good at harnessing that talent and effectively directing it into their music. This EP will make any music fan happy.