Review by Tom Coombs
‘Who are you?’ is the début album from Hayley Cannon, London based musician and songstress and has some praise from the BBC and more so I checked it out to see what made this début something worth a listen.
From the initial listen my mind jumped to a mixture of Katie Melua, Norah Jones and Kate Bush. I know an odd mix but it works, the music is eclectic as are the vocals and after listening to one track does not mean the next one will be similar in anyway. The difference between the title track ‘Who are you?” and ‘Mirror’ is huge, ‘Mirror’ is where my thoughts on Norah Jones come in. The mellow jazz style of the music with the vocals of Hayley Cannon and featured Nick Trepka really makes this a relaxed affair.
The style of ‘Mirror’ carries on with the start of ‘Blood & Stone’ but this is a bigger sound than the simple one of the previous track and has a more acoustic feel, with guitars and a slightly heavier bass line. The mixture of the guitar and piano is really nice and a sound that is missed a lot these days and always sounds amazing together. Then add in Hayley’s vocals and the backing vocals and you have one beautiful song.
One track that leapt out at me was ‘Strangers’ and this was down to the vocals, you feel the power behind them and elegance that they are brought to the song. The whole song feels like the intro to a huge James Bond movie theme. It never goes that big, the chorus adds in violin which adds so much to what is a simple composition as a whole.
The album mixes Jazz with Acoustic and adds a bit of folk in for good measure, I can see why this début has been noticed by many. It is different but also revisits a style I for one haven’t heard for some time but remember that is was always nice to hear. It is never a style that will blow you away leaving just your boots, it is a relaxed subdued party, it is all about the sound and how it makes you feel, rather than the effect around you.
‘Who are you?” by Hayley Cannon and featuring Nick Edward Harris and produced by Nick Trepka is out now. Check out the video for the title track below.