Yet another little known album this week. Bosley is an artist who uses retro sounds in modern music. This melange of styles ranges through blues, funk and modern indie sounds; it’s a pretty solid base. I say artist, Bosley Brown is the main man but is backed by a band of people, thus I am not sure whether to refer to Bosley as the group or the man. The band is pretty broad instrumentally; as well as the classic guitars, bass and drums, you also have horns and strings in the arsenal. So let’s see what’s in store.
The album opens with Jungles, a track reminiscent of something you’d hear in the Blues Brothers, mixed with the funk you’d get from Prince; specifically I am reminded of the track Kiss, with the high falsetto vocals over a rich funky backing. You sort of get reminded of large wooden stages in the middle of a room where people are drinking their cocktails, the haze of smoke in the air. It’s really nicely by-gone and somewhat easy listening, that is until the slight craziness of the end.
Sharpshooter … reminds of somewhere between something you’d get from Stevie Wonder (think the track Positivity) and Try A Little Tenderness from Otis Redding. Again the backing is great with horns and strings as well as the pianos, drums. It’s feel good and well worth the listen – big, bold and brilliant. In contrast, Coca Cola is has a bit of latin feel and strips to a simpler sound. It has some really funky chord progressions that make it so listenable. That’s what this album is, it’s so damn listenable. Weirdly the track changes styles so much (cohesively mind you) that it reminds me of Mika, remember him from a few years ago?
Just Like You takes more of a Hip hop feel opening with it’s repeating hook, though it doesn’t continue like this, it’s just a simple sung piece, hanging between tenor and a falsetto, man’s voice. Again it’s a good listen though this is less open loungey and a lot more of an intimate personal track. I have to say style wise, this is ticking all the boxes, it has the interesting writing style of Stevie, with the performance of Otis Redding and Prince.
Neon Magazine pulls back a bit; it’s a solid enough work but is a sort of spoken word blues piece with a bit of a 50’s style backing. It’s at this point that I realise I haven’t heard the front man sing in a style that isn’t emulating another artist’s style or rather isn’t a vocal technique – I want to hear your natural voice man!
I Get the Feeling delivers on the previous ask with a gentle latin dance feel; its simple and relaxing, truly stripped back and a moment of quiet in an album that is delivering quite a few big popping numbers. The voice is a kind of fragile baritone but characterful in it’s delivery. Next we had back to a blues brothers style number with Money Tree; we’re back to uptempo funk/soul/blues that could be performed from any of the classic peformers, from Ray Charles to Aretha Franklin.
The final track is Baby’s Wearin’ Blue, your ambling home in the evening feel. It’s about the artist’s lost love and has more of a bluegrass style than anything. It starts simple but soon you are joined by the clarinets, the horns and the kitchen sink. They are playing themselves off from a very fine album.
This is nice work, from a little known artist. It’s performance music as a whole and puts on a show. I know I need to explore more from Bosley but what a great intro.
Is this album for you?
It’s for anyone who can enjoy the retro blues sound of the past, if you’re tapping your foot to the blues brothers, you need to dive into this album. Really worth a good go and one of the most pleasant surprises of the week so far.
- Writing: 7/10
- Performance: 9/10
- Style: 8/10