Nate Taylor is a solo singer-songwriter based in Boston, MA. Though he initially studied law and considered a legal career, he had a sudden change of heart in January 2013 and strayed from his pre-planned path to learn how to play guitar and wade into the unknown depths of independent music. But his small dreams were not dreamt in vain, as he now lives in Boston and regularly performs live shows (much to his delight).
Taylor’s passion is made evident through every tentatively plucked string and every tenderly sung note on his new release entitled Harboring Hope. For the most part, this is an acoustic effort, littered with recurring patterns throughout the 11-track album. But Taylor is not striving for an assortment of multi-instrumental and varied tracks. His talents lie within his emotive expression as a singer and the melancholic chord progressions present from Harboring Hope’s start to finish.
My personal highlight is opener “Promise Me.” It encompasses everything that Nate Taylor wishes to convey through his music about his persona, life and innermost thoughts. He fluctuates and painfully strides between melodically-guttural vocals at the lower end of his range and tender falsetto at his upper reaches, as he exclaims, through a stunningly, beautiful wail, “And you say: promise me we’ll never lose touch.” This is what folk music should evoke - tenderness, beauty and warmth all at once. There is something inviting, yet heart-breaking, about Taylor’s performance.
“The Finer Things” displays a slightly-alternate style present on Harboring Hope. Whilst delicacy and calm are Nate Taylor’s trademark sonic comfort zones, it is on this third track that he really strips back the noise to instead deliver a purely quiet and tempered performance. Whispers of drawn-out falsetto swirl and climb over slowly-picked guitar chords.
To summarize, Harboring Hope is the dream of a folk fanatic. It boasts infectious songwriting coupled with pure, brittle and unfiltered emotion. Surely that is all the music goodness one could possibly seek from a folk record. Nate Taylor still has room for improvement, of course, as I am sure he must have even catchier melodies residing in his head. But the fact is that he is a fantastic singer and songwriter, meaning he already possesses all the right ingredients for greatness.
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