Indies And The Underground

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Artist Profile: Joshua Worden

 

R&B artist Joshua Worden seems intent on defining the words one man band. The Atlanta-based singer and trained jazz musician not only writes, composes and produces his own material, but also makes up the majority of his live band, tackling keyboards, guitars, synthesizers and sampler.

Worden dropped his debut EP The Withered Tree last year, and is set to release his full-length debut Always This later this month. A mix of R&B, indie pop, electronic and jazz, the album’s ten tracks are decidedly down tempo cuts featuring lyrics brimming with poetic introspection. Exhibit A: album opener “Marrow,” a slow burner with warm,harmonic guitar and warbly synths, that contains aching couplets such as “What’s this the heart churns/Beauty the dirt turns below/Deep in the marrow/A thousands things we cannot know.”

“Midnight” ups the emotional honesty, detailing a night out at the club , as well as the mix of excitement, fear and anticipation of watching a stranger from across the room, and the thrill in connecting with them. The words are given extra weight by the song’s dream-like harmonies and delicate electronic effects. Other tracks switch up the pace a little–”Hunter sails along on sea of deep, pulsating and sunny keyboards and “Embers” will get heads nodding with a catchy guitar lick, while “To Dust” speeds things up just long enough to get in a little two step . But make no mistake, this is mood music. The kind suited for lazy Sunday afternoons, low-key late nights or rainy days.

Although Always This is a subdued affair, the unabashedly vulnerable lyrics, subtle instrumentation and interweaving of voices slowly but surely lure you in, making for a disarming listen.  It certainly backs up Worden’s belief that music is his chosen path. “I feel that music, more than any other pursuit, is the way that I can give back to the world,” he said.

Listen to Always This here, and check for Worden’s upcoming live dates here.

 

 

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