Borrowed Body has for a few years been the musical project of London based singer-songwriter Niall Hill. His debut album came out just shy of three years ago and it’s evident from his latest release that this time was not idly spent. Over the last couple of years he has been honing his skills for his eagerly anticipated follow-up album The Rising Sea.
The Rising Sea is a truly stunning and captivating collection of music filled with such a richness and depth that it becomes an album that demands to be listened to time and time again. It needs this so that you can pick up on every subtle little nuance that is hidden in each song. Tender guitar medleys overlap with pianos and organs, bells and chimes dance in the background as soft and tender drumbeats burst each song to life with a small and powerful energy. Listen closely and you might even find the sound of crackling flames hidden within his work. There is a jubilance within these compositions that is contagious – each instrument combining to bring a whimsical and soul-lifting tune to your ears.
Enhancing this of course is the absolutely outstanding performance given by Hill. His vocals are smooth, charming, tender and totally brimming with passion. There is a certain warming sense of familiarity buried within it that makes it that much easier to hear. After a couple of songs it becomes apparent that this is because there are elements within it that share similarities with the likes of Nick Drake and The Woolshed Sessions. This friendly and familiar trace makes the album seem more like the embrace of an old friend you’ve not seen in years.
When you have waited for nigh on three years for an album to materialise it is one of the most rewarding feelings in the world for it to be as perfectly crafted as this one. Time means nothing when you’re met with a series of songs that have each been polished to perfection. If you’re looking for one album this year to just sit back, headphones on, eyes closed and be transported – then this is your album.
More information at http://borrowedbody.com/
Review by Joe Knipe