SAM BUTCHER – DEBUT EP “ARETHA” (Stream/Review).

BACK in May, Plugged In caught up with Mirror Gorillas member Sam Butcher as he released his debut solo single.

Now five months on, Butcher has crafted his first EP and is ready for the public to fall in love with it.

The six track EP features a range of jazz/soul vocals with modern atmospheric synths to produce a unique piece of art.

Opening with “Ain’t No Way” kicks the EP off nicely, with a soft piano and wailing synths, it’s laid back easy listening music. It’s similar to the single “Do What U Wanna Do” which was released back in May. Butcher has kept the consistency of his solo work, perfecting his individuality upon this release.

“Daydreaming” plays massively on the repetition of “daydreaming of you” alongside a fast paced electronic drum beat to create a modern electronic soul song.

As a listener, you are swept from one song to another, flowing freely from sassy “Till U Come Back 2 Me” into “Daydreaming” and then delving into the Archie Marshall sounding “Unforgettable”. It’s been a while since an EP has flown together so perfectly.

The lower tones on “I’ll Be There” are brought to life by the gospel style vocals bellowing out above a swirling void of musical indulgence. The wailing that can be heard of the track holds elements of Pink Floyd’s “The Great Gig in the Sky” it’s an epic track.

The EP comes to a close with the track “Keep You” – a song in which you can hear elements of all tracks that have come before it. The piano is prominent like on “Ain’t No Way”, the drums thump in the background like on “Daydreaming” and the vocals blare out like on “I’ll Be There”. It’s a culmination of all Butcher’s work and ends the EP fantastically.

Considering Butcher  crafted everything himself using software instruments recorded on a midi keyboard, including the drums, synths, leads, bass lines etc. It is a very mature EP and the workings of someone who is a very talented musician.

What’s next for Sam Butcher? We caught up with him to find out, he said: “I’ve already started making more music and beats. Since starting this project I’ve been listening to stuff in a different way, so now when I listen to a song I can’t help but listen out for new samples for my tracks.

“I’ve got so many ideas now that I want to bring to fruition and hopefully I’ll be able to.

“I’d like to do some gigs although I’d want to learn how to DJ properly first which I’ve not had a moment for yet.”

When speaking of influences on the EP, it was interesting to hear how Butcher had moved away from the influences he drew from on his first single, he said: “I’d say that in a way Aretha Franklin’s music has had less of an impact on the sound of the EP than other artists and producers.

“Even though all the samples are Aretha, the techniques I’ve used and ideas I’ve had for how the songs have been structured and developed have been more inspired by producers like Dilla, Kanye, Jamie xx, Kaytranada, those who I always think use samples in the most novel and creative ways.”

Sadly Butcher confirmed there will be no physical release for the EP jsut yet, adding: “I won’t sell the EP or do a proper physical release unless a label got involved and helped me licence the copyrighted sample material, because otherwise I might get in trouble.

“Maybe some CDs will turn up in Kelly’s Records – which is my local record shop in Cardiff – for them to give away for free to people.”

If you’re about in Cardiff it would be silly not to pop down and see if these copies are available…

You can stream the FULL EP below:

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