Thomas Abban’s Black Water from the album A Sheik’s Legacy is the perfect example of how immense and magical music can be when you put an authentic and hearty dose of soul and creativity into it. For what opens up as the very pure sound an acoustic guitar and a single vocal part, the song immediately wraps itself around you as this stylish and soulful portrayal of human emotion and depth. The melody meanders in an unpredictable manner, the rhythm shifts and evolves, the soundscape builds up to this huge crescendo of sounds – the absolute height of the instrumentation and the climactic power of the artist’s voice – and all the while, the story line and the ideas of the song are constantly provoking thought and drawing you to listen even more closely, which is difficult at first, when you’re so mesmerised by the performance.
The raw edge of this music brings with it a touch of nostalgia and a necessary element of professionalism. The musicianship is incredibly skillful, as is the manner in which the release has been crafted. The journey from the softness of the start to the weight of the centre and then fading back away into silence is one the hypnotizes you and holds tight to your attention throughout. It’s important to also mention though, that there is something notably fresh and unusual about Thomas Abban’s leading voice. It’s not the gritty or emotionally exhausted sound you might more commonly associate with soul or funk, but rather, something that ranges from the blissfully delicate and vulnerable, to the almighty and powerful, without ever so much as gracing the possibility of shouting. His range is beautifully impressive, and this entire song comes through as thoroughly genuine and stunning to witness. A definite one to watch our for in terms of both live performances and future releases.