Album Review: Isaac Gracie - 'Isaac Gracie'

Isaac Gracie, the 23-year-old British artist, with his classic rolling emotive sound and hauntingly beautiful, introspective lyrics has delivered a dazzling debut album.

The much-anticipated eponymous “Isaac Gracie”, released on the 13th April through Virgin EMI was largely produced by Markus Dravs at RAK Studios in London and features eleven tracks including the recent singles ‘terrified’ and ‘the death of you & i’.

Heavy of heart and soul, Gracie writes soaring, emotional guitar songs with a melancholic intensity. It’s clear that Gracie has been finding his feet and working out who he is and discovering what he wants since the industry spotlight fell on him a few years ago. The fuss was caused by a dusty-sounding, careworn home recording of ‘last words’ that was uploaded online without expectation and any anticipation of what might follow. The voice behind it was completely new to the premise of where writing a great song might lead him. Even now he’d tell you that he’s still slowly working it all out, but this debut collection sounds as fully-realised and confident as any of recent memory.

With a poet’s economy, he uses his words sparingly, shirking any desire to be overly-confessional. Despite this apparent heaviness of heart, there’s a playfulness to his songs too, usually reserved for the melodies. Poetic in his placement of words and masterful in his expression of feelings, the whole album is undeniably stunning and conjures up the epic, anthemic scope of Coldplay with hushed reverence, tenderness and intimacy of Elliot Smith.

‘running on empty’ – with it’s pulsating groove and lashing anthemic hook leaves you feeling buoyant and boisterous. It’ll no doubt be a winner during this summer’s festival season. ‘the death of you & i’ - a Jekyll & Hyde, Tarantino-esque track that starts off Beatnik in feel, develops into a thrashing electric chorus which then subsides into a gentle trot, conjuring images of a lone cowboy riding into town. ‘silhouettes of you’ – a stirring break-up song with traces of Radiohead in its disparaged delivery

It may have been two years in the making but the album was definitely worth the wait! Unquestionably a modern-day masterpiece and contender for album of the year.

Words by Marijana Mladenić