From a small town in Alabama comes Skylor Brumbeloe, a soulful folk singer-songwriter whose music is reminiscent of a lazy summer day in the Deep South. Come Gold or Grave, Brumbeloe’s first completed project, was completely recorded and mixed by Brumbeloe himself, and his personality is evident in the notes and sounds that comprise the record.
A lone guitar begins the album with “Sad Songs,” an intricate fingerpicking tune that incorporates wistful lyrics and highly melodic harmonies into a soft, somber, yet bright song. Brumbeloe’s voice fits beautifully between the notes of his guitar and his effortless singing makes this track an enjoyable listen. The energy and complexity of the album rise in “Tennessee,” a classic soul tune that wanders between jazz and blues throughout the song.
“See You Again” revisits the guitar-led ballad that Brumbeloe performs so well. Backup percussion and instruments give the song an added dimension that the album’s opener did not possess. A high-vitality harmonica opens “Golden Eyes,” arguably the most catchy song on the entire record, due to its infectious beat and accessible melody.
Brumbeloe showcases his musical skill with a guitar again in “Your Eyes” commanding the soundscape with his voice and guitar. He carries the energy of the song upon his voice and fingers, then eases right in with the rest of the instruments in “Come Home, Lover,” a steady, solid backwoods anthem. Emotive and smooth, “Stop My Heart” recalls tones from classic acts such as Bob Dylan or modern ones like John Mayer.
The album comes to a close with three action-packed tracks. “Here Tonight” reverberates traditional chords and pounding percussion. “Working For You” builds gradually as Brumbeloe reaches the full extent of his vocal range and “Silver or Gold” ends the record in a reflective, slow and harmonious triumph. Overall, Come Gold or Grave is a masterful work, especially considering it is a debut release and it makes clear the talent and prowess that Skylor Brumbeloe can deliver in his music.
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