Freddie Bourne - The Troubled Boy at the Bonfire Disco - Stereo Stickman

Freddie Bourne The Troubled Boy at the Bonfire Disco


Uniquely blending softly atmospheric, ambient sound design, with organic acoustic guitar picking, and long-form, RnB-style vocal melodies, Freddie Bourne crafts an alternative pop sound and style all of his own with this new EP.

Offering decidedly emotive, personal and revealing songwriting, the opening song I Hope You Don’t Forgive Me progresses from folk-like acoustic beginnings, to the full-throttle energy and multi-layered weight of experimental EDM, without ever losing sight of its underlying intentions and feelings.

It’s a little like if Damien Rice were to collaborate with Labyrinth, and maybe Coldplay. There’s softness and grit, plenty of creativity, and a fine balance between being unpredictable and satisfying. The title is also intriguing and alternative enough to really back up the artistic freedom, and the soul and regret that’s interwoven in the writing and performance.

Following the sheer energy and rising intensity of the post-four-minute opener, Jeni emerges with a simple Americana sway and a manner of story-telling that’s a little more removed from the self.

A touch of Foster the People hits for the verses – the descriptive, scene-setting lyrics. Then things brighten and evolve, and this soon becomes a stunning piece of music and performance – a defiant highlight that feels like a timeless classic. That experimental aura returns during the latter half, as synths and solos intertwine to fill a voiceless moment with colour.

Pale Blue Sky then smashes into the room with more of that heavy production and attention-grabbing sound-play. Contrast is utilised brilliantly once again, as vocal delicacy drastically juxtaposes the instrumental boldness and power that precedes and follows it.

This is something of a grower, but a superb song once you’ve found yourself within it. Great melodies, a powerful soundscape, and refreshing, deeply human lyrics.

Bringing things to a thoughtful, quiet finish, Spacedust tips its hat to classically ambient trip-hop. A likable groove, questioning lyrics, a whispered, tired vocal-line. Then we get these rightfully space-like synths up front and centre, adding melody and colour – a certain clarity and warmth. The riff is simple, recognisable, effective.

Evolution continues throughout, making the most of those Freddie Bourne creative layers and that freedom of set-up that seems so true to his approach.

As things come to an end, we’re prompted to consider the EP title, this troubled boy, the bonfire disco, and the potential conceptual threads between all of these songs. At which point it’s fairly essential to listen over once more. Beautifully done.

Find & follow Freddie Bourne on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram or visit his Website.

Rebecca Cullen

Founder & Editor

Founder, Editor, Musician & MA Songwriter

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