Greg Jacquin’s latest project Hudson River first emerges with a fairly unusual musical set-up. The instrumentation seems to take a little influence from various styles and genres, and fuse it all to create this sort of classical-folk-rock ambiance, upon which the leading artist’s voice and the storylines play out like emotional and mildly theatrical indie-rock anthems. The Station is the opener and offers all of this and more. The sound is chaotic and vibrant, yet you adjust to the development of progression throughout pretty quickly. The key melody is one that soon becomes familiar, as is the strength of a well written song. The final few moments really make certain it surrounds you in a memorable way.
Floating takes things in a far more delicate direction, a spacious aura unfolds – an acoustic guitar, a subtle shuffle for rhythm, a touch of strings to brighten up the outer edges. The vocal delivery is softer here, as is the finished soundscape in general, meaning you really focus in on the lyrics. The verses lead to a surprisingly hypnotic and quite melancholy or unsettled hook section, one that is once again really well written. The contrast between this and the surrounding verse sections works wonders.
The creative freedom of that instrumentation shows itself once again for On The Moorings. With this comes further imagery, clear-cut scene-setting, and an all-important personal touch that makes the whole thing feel very genuine and heartfelt. This song has a definite touch of country to it, though this is far from a single defining feature. Eclecticism reigns on these tracks and it leads to something distinctly characterful. Scratches & Bridges follows with an upbeat sense of hopefulness, complete with a horn section and a beat that sweeps your sorrows away.
Yesterdaze opens up with something of an epic, indie-orchestral vibe. The soundscape is beautiful, as is the melody and the delivery of this. In addition, the lyrics are short and concise, offering hypnotic imagery again and that necessary element of realness that is the personal, honest touch. This one works really well in creating around you a passionate and overwhelming moment of escapism. From the chord progression to the leading voice to the mix, everything hits with impact.
Hopeless Entrance showcases a notably more alternative approach to musicality and writing. The performance style reflects the sentiment suggested by the lyrics, making for something cleverly unusual and beautifully relevant to itself. The gentleness of the music and the performance comes through as captivating at this point within the project. The string mix of The Station comes afterwards and really re-energizes the room with that now-familiar chord progression and this magnetic meeting of instruments. As things grow the experience really reaches out to entrance you.
The EP comes to a close with the smooth and colourful radio-edit of Floating. The accessible subtly and softness lest you really get lost in the atmospheric ambiance of it all. The melody, the lyrics, the openness, the flicker of jazz piano alongside of the orchestral wall of lightness – there’s a comforting feeling of having been here before, as well as a newly fresh energy that is likely to last through a fair few future listens, and then some. The project is really interesting, to listen in full is the best way to truly get everything out of it. Well worth exploring.