Review: Adam Winn – “Adam Winn EP”
Without even knowing Adam Winn hails from a town with a population less than 20,000, it’d be easy to tell that this is an artist hailing from a humble, rural area. The music found on his self-titled debut EP has that calming, serene sense to it, and makes for a great introduction with a package of well-written, beautifully sung, and precisely played tunes.
The Fort St. John, British Columbia native fully embraces his folky side in this handful of peaceful, well-constructed songs. It’s evident that Winn is a natural singer-songwriter, noticeable in his ability to play acoustic guitar and bass while singing tunes he’s written himself. On Adam Winn EP, he introduces himself as a well-polished musician without coming off as too perfect. There’s a lot to resonate with here, including a distinct humble nature, relatable subject matter, and a result that would find equal opportunities for airplay at a coffee shop or a camping trip.
Opener “Creston” keeps the same simple melody from beginning to end, and the nearly six-minute song acts as the perfect intro to Winn’s oeuvre. Over the next almost half hour, Adam Winn establishes his brand as an acoustic-meets-contemporary musician who values precision as much as he does heartfelt sentiment. Winn’s voice has the perfect tone for this type of music, properly singing with passion and emphasis without overdoing it. On certain moments, his vocal moves into a more emotive place with the odd upper register wail or croon.
Lyrically, Winn has some footing to find. A few of his couplets seem to exist primarily for the sake of finding a rhyme, but this is a minor issue. Overall, the subject matter and general emotive quality of this music is an accurate representation of lovelorn feelings, life in the shadows of the country, and what it’s like to feel regret and passion.
The best track of the bunch “Better Friend” finds Winn in a miserable spot, full of remorse and looking back wishing he had done things differently in a relationship situation. We’ve all been there, but somehow Winn manages to make such a familiar situation feel both empathetic and yet refreshing. Later, closer “Always You” finds Winn in the slowest, most delicate we hear from him on the whole album, accompanied only by a sole, slow acoustic guitar. “I’m here to be with you / No more waiting, no more hiding / this day we are one,” he sings. Again, we feel the pain and yearning he’s singing about, but in his heartfelt vocal, we hear the familiar and the new combining forces.
The Adam Winn EP is a hell of a debut, full of quality over quantity. It’s over almost as soon as it starts, but it definitely leaves the listener wanting more. And that’s a great spot to leave things off.