Adam Winn is a singer-songwriter from British Columbia, Canada, who works as a fireman by day. He was classically trained as a vocalist and studied voice in college. After being asked to participate in a radio showcase, he decided to put together some songs he had been writing over the years to develop his first EP. His style can be described as folk/acoustic and his lyrics have a definite storytelling appeal to them. His self-titled debut EP Adam Winn features five tracks about love, life and friendship and have a grass roots, raw quality to them.
The album starts off with “Creston” which begins with a gentle acoustic guitar melody that reminded me of the folk rock songs of the ’60s and ’70s. Winn’s voice is rough and gritty yet refined with a James Taylor-esque quality. The lyrics are descriptive and follow a flow very similar to that of a story or poem. This song had a “Jack and Diane” by John Mellencamp feel, basically a story about life. I enjoyed it. Winn’s vocals are soothing and the track has a gentle rhythmic quality about it that made me look forward to the rest of the album.
“Burnout” started with some harmonica and the same gentle guitar. This track had a sadder, more melancholy feel than the first one and Winn’s vocals became more dramatic and intense halfway through the song with a surprising falsetto that I enjoyed. The lyrics “I’ll watch you burn out, I won’t make a sound. I had to let go, you were pulling me down” drip with angst and regret and worked very well with Winn’s intense vocal performance.
The darker mood continued with “Better Friend” a sad song about regretting the way he’s treated a childhood friend. Winn’s detailed lyrics sometimes seem a little too much. I enjoy the folksy storytelling approach, at times it just comes off as cheesy but ultimately does not take away from the overall quality.
“You Are” is much more upbeat and has a hopeful vibe. The lyrics are about love and adoration. Winn seems much more confident in his vocals in this track. There is more depth to the sound of his voice which adds more dimension to the song. I found it to be a very sweet, endearing song that I could see being played during the first dance of a bride and groom. The same theme is repeated with the final track “Always You.” It was about professing your undying love to someone and promising to always be there. Again I found the lyrics to be a little overdone, but I still enjoyed the song.
Winn’s debut EP shows a lot of heart and passion. His lyrics are complex and descriptive with love being an underlying motif in every track. I really loved the harmonica and folksy guitar mixed with gruff vocals and storytelling. I feel like some tracks would have benefited from some softer vocal harmonies or background vocals, although the overall production quality was high. I look forward to future albums.
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