The Frightened Rabbit frontman continues his adventures in songwriting with a more experimental but hugely enjoyable solo LP
Scott Hutchison, aka Owl John, claims that this record, fun as it was to make, is more about cleansing his palate and exercising a few underworked songwriting muscles before the next Frightened Rabbit album proper. If that’s the case, we’d best start getting very excited about that record already, because the warm-up is a beauty. Recorded between Mull and Los Angeles, there are clear themes of loneliness here: Hutchison is a fish out of water.
Most will already know, though, that it’s under such conditions that he produces some of his best work. The scintillating Ten Tons of Silence, the reverberating Sounds About Roses and the excellent single Hate Music are some of his most enjoyable compositions yet. There’s a welcome sense of adventure; Owl John shows that Hutchison is continuing to expand his creative arc, which is getting broader and more daring with each successive record. [Finbarr Bermingham]