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Single Review: Jess Morgan – ‘Richer Thinner Smarter EP’

3 min read

Jess Morgan’s rise within the world of mainstream folk seems to be building momentum this month as the singer-songwriter quickly climbs the ranks as one of 2013’s ‘ones-to-watch’.

Though the name may not ring too many bells for most, things are about to change as Jess Morgan starts the years off with a 32 date tour around the UK, showcasing her skills to pleased audiences as she covers a whole lot of ground along the way.

Jess Morgan With the success of such a lengthy and widespread tour and garnished with praise from some of folks heavyweights at Folk Radio UK, The Guardian and BBC Radio 2, we wondered why we hadn’t heard of Jess Morgan before. We felt a little ashamed if we are to be brutally honest but no time like the present, as the saying goes, and with that in mind we leapt at the opportunity to hear the singer-songwriters brand new EP, Richer Thinner Smarter.

The EP we have been offered by Jess Morgan sways more toward being an album than an EP with a hefty 7 tracks – quite a generous offering.

The Missionary starts our journey through the EP and Jess’ eloquent and folk-tinged vocals are perched nicely over a guitar driven melody, both raw and stripped back so that we are able to hear every movement of instrument and voice. We love Jess’ vocal inflections on this number as well as the gorgeous breathy tones that the singer unleashes throughout the track.

The melody of the following Modern World is a little too similar to the opening number this is quickly remedied as the track evolves into a song in its own right with Jess pouring her heart out while her vocals maneuver around a well-constructed, instrumental arrangement.

The EP’s title track finds a nesting spot in the opening half of the EP and is one of the highlights within the 7 tracks offered. The track is a laid back affair with some engaging yet slightly chilling lyrics like; “You could stay a non-believer in the company of wolves, and they’re tearing off pieces of you” casting her songsmith skills into the spotlight.

As we get deeper into the collection, another track stands out as one of the EP’s notables in the form of Picturecards. Americana comes flowing thick out of this one as we are taken through some beautiful guitar-work that sits modestly on the track, holding back from stealing any of the limelight from Jess’ vocals.

The songs we have been presented with on the EP are simply produced, well composed and lyrically sweet additions to the folk genre and really do showcase a star on the rise who is well equipped to take on the folk scene in 2013.