REVIEW: ARTIST VS POET – “Remember This”

Artist vs Poet – Remember This

Reviewed by Mark Plummer

Acoustic albums fall in to many traps that you might not expect. Everyone loves a good acoustic track and will usually buy the albums with the bonus acoustic material opposed to those that don’t contain acoustic material., however that’s dealing with one or two tracks at a time. When some bright spark decides that it would be “cool” to put together an acoustic EP or short release, it usually starts to drag and gets boring after the first couple of tracks due to the lack of creativity from the artist. Artist vs Poet however have bucked this trend and delivered a very solid release.

Rather than just sticking with acoustic guitars and leaving it at that, there’s experiments with a piano on the majority of tracks and even a nice amount of bass to bulk it up and make it sound a lot more full. When all this is complimented with some pretty slick vocal work, this is an acoustic release that is actually worth listening to. Artist vs Poet have taken a trend that is hard to pull off and done it convincingly.

The main factor to why this is so good is just how polished it is. Plenty of acoustic releases have this “DIY” feel to them and what Remember This does so well, is to bridge the gap between that professionalism and rawness, it’s very well balanced. The male lead vocals are held back appropriately and then released when the power is really needed. The piano is an interesting addition, whilst it’s not the best it could have been, it’s still enhances the whole listen to another level in places. There are times when it comes off too harsh and the volume could have been controlled better with a softer playing style. Pianissimo would have complemented much of this album with appropriate crescendos, diminuendos and accents to really bring the piano playing to life and make it truly integral. Remember This is a track which exemplifies where this isn’t achieved, yet could have been so effective. The track itself is a good slow track, but the piano needs to reflect the soft vocals. It does eventually soften, but only once the acoustic guitar is brought in, it’s almost too little too late.

One of the best tracks to be found on Remember This is Stay, the acoustic work in the verses is truly wonderful and leaves you listening to one of the best hooks you’ll hear on an acoustic guitar. This track was also featured in an acoustic video to promote the release of this short album and what works so well for this song in particular is how much more expanded it has become compared to what listeners would have first heard. The verses introduce more little riffs that float over the song and the included bass adds that all-important depth, there’s boy-band style vocals in the chorus that support the layered lead vocals really well. In fact the way the vocals have been arranged on this track is so good that they become a joy to pick apart and appreciate the great use of placement from the mixer.

The collaboration with Mat Musto (Songwriter/Producer for Justin BieberMike PosnerMachine Gun Kelly and more) on the first track Leavin’ in the Morningoffers up a great deal of warmth and texture. The breakdown is superb with the bass being brought forward and taking a more central role with the bass drum and claps, this is just one example of some great variety for an acoustic album and really makes the whole album work.

In short, this release doesn’t get old. It’s refreshing and the fact that these are all new songs and not covers of previous songs they’ve released only enhances the reason to listen to it over and over again. There’s no one or two tracks worth downloading, get the whole bunch.

4 out of 5

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