Evan Sharp originally lived in Idaho Falls, Idaho, but he has moved to Provo, Utah, furthering his music reach across the states. For nearly a decade, he has been playing a multitude of instruments, writing music and performing live. He has been a part of numerous bands during that time and currently plays in the band Footlight Parade, hailing from Idaho Falls. He has played live near his hometown in Rexburg, Idaho and now at his new home in Provo. His first EP entitled In the Sand was released this summer and is truly an experience of all that he has accomplished so far.
In the Sand is a four-track EP which opens with “The Real Words.” Fast-paced, frantic, sweet acoustic arpeggios burst into view. Sharp’s emotive vocals emerge from this intimate chaos, lamenting, “How she’d make me feel that I still have a chance” and using other lyrics full of bitterness and anguish. The guitar transforms into vicious strumming patterns to match Sharp’s slightly-restrained angst. All the emotions have been nailed perfectly in musical form. The progression jumps between dark, twisted patterns and slightly more hopeful moments. Sharp is conflicted and this comes across brilliantly.
“Walk with Me” is a slightly more tempered track. Acoustic guitar arpeggios rule the melody once again, but plinks of minimal piano notes reverberate alongside Sharp’s softer vocals. This is a track melancholic in sound, but, much as with the opener, it is quite hopeful. Things have brightened and there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Harmonic vocals crooning “Won’t you stay?” has slightly mismatched timing and is one of the highlights. This is by far the climax of the EP, despite emerging very early on.
In “The Sorry Story” Sharp seeps even further into mellow, lullaby music. Much as the title suggests, this truly does seem to be a song of apologies. A straightforward melody sets the scene for this ballad, but it is the lyrics and vocals which take the center stage here. Sharp begs, “Forgive me / I know / I know / There might have been another way.” If there was ever a sincere apology within a song, this is it.
The closing track of the EP “In the Sand” is a slight return to darker tones. Yet, much like the other tracks on this short EP, it is a five-minute piece full of twists, turns, ups and downs. The acoustic guitar playing pattern is the twisted hook to this track and Sharp’s elongated vocals seep perfectly into the track, becoming another instrument to support the ethereal atmosphere. He cries that ‘He feels the pain from what was said / I see the day come falling in” which suggests that things may have come full circle and skepticism has returned. Then again, even in the more hopeful moments of this EP, there always lingers regret and bittersweet nostalgia.
This is truly an exciting debut EP from Evan Sharp. Packed full of emotion and impressive guitar-playing, Sharp showcases not only his playing experience but his raw, natural talent when it comes to writing music, penning introspective lyrics and expressing these thoughts through his voice. Great stuff. I highly recommend giving this a listen.
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