Words by Benji Tranter.
Hello and welcome to the final instalment of A Year In Faves! If you’re not sure exactly what that means, have a gander at the introduction to part one. Below you will find some of our moderators’ favourite tunes from the past year of submissions. The crème de la crème if you will… Let’s get cookin!
FreshMod: RUSS JEANES
Fave #1: RAPHAEL DOYLE – I Come From Ireland (Faves 215)
Russ says: There are many wonderful tracks that I have had the pleasure to hear in the FOTN inbox. Tracks that I have heard and then immediately and confidently chosen as my Fave on that particular week. Many great songs that I have put onto playlists, and many where I have been compelled to comment on or send messages to their creators.
However, there is only one track, since listening, that has completely stopped me in my tracks, a track where I had to shut the door to my work room, and listen in solitude. A track so incredibly honest, that it connected so strongly with me that it dissolved me to tears, and has again each time I have had the emotional strength to listen.
I Come From Ireland is an incredible piece of heartfelt, gut wrenchingly honest storytelling, at times magical, at times incredibly painful to listen to. An overheard deeply personal confession. In my votes on the listening post I wrote a message regarding how it reminded me of in some small part of Christopher Lambert in Highlander – recalling his life and immortality. The piece recalls a life lived, and my words cannot do it justice.
A piece I wish I had the skill to write, and the honesty to tell. Wonderful in every detail and every word.
Fave #2: FLO PERLIN – Share My Heart (Faves 233)
Russ says: I was lucky enough to be reviewing the week I heard Flo Perlin‘s delicately beautiful Share my Heart.
I used to live in North Yorkshire and travel every day on a train route over a viaduct and past open fields and a forest, gradually moving towards the city of Leeds. I regularly caught glimpses of wildlife; the morning rabbits and the odd kestrel or kite. I shared the train journey with the same commuters every day.
Once when seeing of a red deer majestically running across the open fields, I looked at my fellow passengers, who obliviously continued staring at phones, listening to music and reading newspapers. I wanted to tap each person on the shoulder and announce what I’d just seen, so they could share my morning view.
It is arrogant of me to say that the sight of a deer or march hare, is more important than what those people were reading or engaging in, everyone is different, it is right that we all take joy in different things. However, my personal passion is for those special and delicate moments – where I feel a connection with the natural world. I like to seek out similar things in the music I fall in love with.
Flo Perlin sings Share my Heart with complete honesty. Her song is innocent, uncontrived and beautiful, with sparse acoustic instrumentation punctuated by cello. Flo sings with a fragile spring lamb warble, of matters of her heart. It reminds me of Vashti Bunyan.
From the first time I heard the song, all I wanted to do was to wrap it up, carry it home in my pocket, and keep it safe so it couldn’t come to any harm. Just like the red deer I saw from the train, I want to tap on the shoulders of people I meet to let them hear this beautiful thing I’ve found.
FreshMod: SHARON PEARCE
Fave #1: SYKOYA – Your Silence (Faves 215)
Sharon says: When you listen to so many songs throughout the year as we do here through our ever bulging inbox, it’s not easy to narrow down to a couple of songs for an end of year play list. Yet Sykoya, a London based trio immediately sprang to my mind and deservedly so.
Your Silence is a stunning track and Anna Marcella’s vocals really stand out to me as they so effortlessly deliver the eerie hypnotic moody atmosphere of the song so well. Expertly produced, Your Silence captured my full attention throughout its entirety and it also happened to be one of the very first tracks I ever reviewed here at FOTN.
Fave #2: ROB.GREEN – Belief (Faves 244)
Sharon says: After taking up the offer of being afforded a second selection for our summer FF’s play list I decided to select one of Nottingham’s finest, Rob.Green with his latest release Belief.
Belief has everything I love about a song; strong lyrics and emotive vocals backed by powerful and energetic rhythms that grab your attention from the start. Top notch production too, well done young man!
FreshMod: STEFF LANE
Fave: JACOB QUINT – The Everlasting (LP 244)
Steff says: There are some things that we all take for granted. We look up to the array of stars that glisten in the cosmos. So many stars – which makes it almost impossible to pick a favourite one. I suppose it depends on which constellation you’re observing…
Enough said; being a moderator on FOTN has opened up my eyes wider than the Hubble telescope. So many bright stars and so many out there that have yet to accomplish their full potential. So,reverting to my tunnel vision and gut feeling I am randomly drawn to a certain tune from this vast expanse of submitted tracks during the last year.
The Everlasting by Jacob Quint has many elements involved. It’s just not one song, but four songs cleverly blended into one. I love the production which manages to keep a tight reign while still managing optimum freedom of expression.
Some might draw parallels with Radiohead but this is no bad thing – ever heard of Muse? Just carry on what you’re doing Jacob. Great tune. Love it.
FreshMod: STEVE HARRIS
Fave: HASHTAG OBI – Student Loans Dropped [Money!] ft. Brudda Nay (Faves 213)
Steve says: Browsing the hundreds of tracks I’d shortlisted from the thousands we’ve listened to over the last year, the memory of this by Hashtag Obi put an instant smile on my face, and I could not resist its pull.
You could say this track is just a bit of frivolity, and in a way it is, but it’s just so well done, effortlessly painting the scene in your mind – you can see that student flat, pizza boxes on the bed, courier at the door with yet another impulse purchase – and feel that sense of relief and possibility, like the rain clouds have arrived after months of punishing drought.
Normal service resumes on the 4th September when our dropbox will reopen for submissions. See you soon! Team Freshnet x