There is a time-honored tradition of incredible women influencing some of music’s most memorable and influential songs and even whole albums. The worldly and well-traveled T.C Young has added his indie-folk album to this illustrious tradition. He humbly submits Rebels, an album based entirely on a woman that he fell in and out of love with several times. In a word, the album is charming. Distinctive vocals and heartfelt lyrics narrate the journey of these two people. He works just as well when he’s writing about the tough stuff as does the mushy stuff. It’s an honest album; it’s not bitter and it left me in a good mood.
Young managed to find the exact halfway point between indie rock and folk, like right down the middle. It’s almost mathematical. It also makes for a fresh sound that is hard to ignore. He had a toolbox full of instruments and skills that make him distinctive in almost every way.
The one instrument that will hit you right from the jump are those dulcet toned pipes of his. He sits in a soulful high range of notes without a care in the world. He makes it sound so effortless and natural which works great for the hefty storytelling he’s doing. He is also quite the narrative wizard.
The album is arranged with a great deal of intention as it seems to be linear. Things start off very innocent in a new and romantic place with the first track which is “Prelude in D Major.” Go down the list to track three, “Weekend” and you’ll have found my favorite song on the album. It’s a song that makes me want to get out of the house, a tough feat by the way, and just be somewhere I don’t recognize. It has the most incredible tempo for walking, it was hard to sit still.
As I said, he does the tough stuff just as well as the mushy stuff and the proof is in the pudding with songs like “Gravity.” This is such a heartfelt, honest and introspective song full of sensational lyrics. The album ends beautifully because we get a female vocalist. Considering a woman started all of this, I love that he had the instinct to add a woman’s touch for the last track “Rebels.” This final song is a conversation piece and again, very honest.
The album had a lot of hands and locations involved in its production including the hands of Young himself. The album is crisp and sounds undoubtedly professional. Echo Garden Studios of Alexandria, Virginia was where the bulk of the recording happened. Additional vocal sessions were done at Sucker Punch Recording Company in Bethesda, Maryland. Final mixing touches were done at Studio L back in Alexandria.
This is a solid recommendation for me. You’re in good hands with Young. He comes off as very passionate about his work and really knows how to build an experience. I would almost recommend he find another person to torture and pull on his heart strings, but that’s not very healthy. Instead I’ll wish him safe travels and hope he drops another album soon.
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