Hear The Track HereIt warms the cockles of me old whatsname when artists I have known for a long time seem to be doing well and no-one more so than the UK's very own Thomas J Marchant. I was watching the results of the latest Critics Corner competition (Ed: prize? Only free advertising on Soundclick and that's nothing to sneer at) and was knocked out that Sails was voted top and consequently may well snatch that prize. As well it should because Sails is pure Thomas J, a beautiful song, rendered with the style and panache that is this musicians trademark (especially with songs). It's also one of the tracks on the new 13 track CD from young Thomarse. I've already reviewed How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Love Cyberspace (May 2009), Say No to Racism and Fascism (June 2009), Nancy 2009 (July 2009), Unemployment (September 2009).
All of the above tracks got good reviews from me and even a couple of Must Have's but I am a well known fan. So much so that Thomas was my Artist of The Year 2008 and that is something only a very few people have done; an award - I might add - based on both musical excellence AND the right community spirit. Hee hee, and you thought it was just about the music eh? Well, listening to Survive (track one, as it were) you might be tempted to question my sanity. It's one of Thomas's rawer songs, and rightly so IMO, but not really indicative of how sweet and powerful he can be when he's really humming. I love, for example, this new acoustic rock side of his work exemplified on tracks like Unemployment and Dreamin' About The Apocalypse, both heavily Dylan sounding epics.
I say Dylan but Thomas is, of course, his own man and his songs tell of a very different time and place. To my ears though, the spirit of the thing remains the same and I believe is one of the reasons why I find this artist appealing. The Legacy of Logie Baird show exactly WHY Thomas seems to appeal to a wide audience. It is fresh, interesting, funny and entertaining and it's just a piano and a voice. What that voice says, though, is the clincher; Thomas J is a people poet and a damn good one as shown on every track on this fine compilation. He is also, despite the lo-fi and sparseness of his work, one of the most innovative artists around by a country mile. Beam Me Up or Put Me Down is a brilliant follow up to the classic Chameleon Dish Archive EP, Let Them Down Gently and will join it on my hard drive (well, the rest of the tracks anyway).
MUST HAVE and FREE!!