Sweet Wild Lily (EP)
A Storyteller of the Finest Hue, Using the Medium of Music to Reel the Listener In.
Good luck to Northern Irish singer-songwriter Ben Glover, who has made quite the name for himself in recent years as a ‘go to’ co-songwriter; most notably with the delectable Gretchen Peters; but a multitude of others too.
But …… and this is a very personal ‘but’ …… I just wish that fame and (hopefully) fortune had come via his own solo work; because it certainly deserves it.
He’s been a busy lad in the last few years; meaning this Four Track release is his first since SHOREBOUND in 2018; and has been a very welcome surprise at RMHQ this week.
The ever so delicate and charming title track Sweet Wild Lily opens the proceedings in a timeless and almost haunting manner. Glover’s distinctive voice aches with longing as he tells the tale of lost love; or is it just plain unrequited as the target of his admirations treads her very own path that doesn’t always include him.
Without reading the accompanying Press Release; I’m not sure if I’ve heard Arguing With Ghosts before; it certainly sounds as if I should have, if I haven’t*. Written alongside the enigmatic Matraca Berg; Colm McLean’s shimmering guitar makes an already haunting tale almost frightening in it’s delivery.
A little part of me was hoping that Broke Down would be Slaid Cleaves’ song of the same name; but nope, it’s actually a Glover/Gretchen Peters song; and as Country as I’ve ever heard Ben; courtesy of a nascent banjo/pedal-steel combo in the background ……. but it will be his stinging words what you remember hours and even days afterwards.
This only leaves the single Fireflies Dancing to tell you about. But that’s not as easy as you’d imagine.
Put simply; this is one of the finest and deepest songs I’ve heard this year – and I’ve heard a lot.
A relatively simple production and arrangement masks a song that I’m 99% sure is destined for numerous Country/Americana albums in the next few years; sometimes sung solo alongside an old acoustic guitar and also when it’s almost unrecognisable with a big ole rocking band and a singer in a Trucker cap and Redwings; and it lends itself to everything in between too.
Ben Glover is first and foremost a storyteller of the finest hue, one who uses the medium of music to reel the listener in; and he does it like an age old Irish Mystic.
*Doh!! Of course Arguing With Ghosts is the opening track on Gretchen Peters’ DANCING WITH THE BEAST from 2018!
Released November 13th 2020
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