Album Review: Roo Panes – Quiet Man

Roo Panes came into notoriety back in 2012 while taking part in a campaign for Burberry which not only focussed his talents as a musician but also saw him get work as a model for the company. Since then he has been working hard to extend himself and further his career.

Last year Panes released this third feature album Quiet Man and this year he has released the same album again as a deluxe edition complete with 22 tracks and several live renditions that were not included in the original release. Panes is a stunning artist with a penchant for creating a bizarrely understated sort of neo-classical folk. He himself totes a twelve-string guitar which takes centre stage in his every performance but what he does from there is to completely engulf himself in a maelstrom of strings of all styles and sizes. With a clear passion for the string family Panes creates vast and epic scores that embody a full orchestral feeling while still retaining a sombre and understated performance. These low-key performances have a sweet and tender atmosphere that is in keeping with the almost introverted stylings that Panes embodies.

Panes has a voice that rings out like the echoes of time. Beautifully poetic and incredibly natural his earnest voice has a well of great power that he drags up from the depths when he needs it. There is a stern versatility to his vocals wherein his gentle passionate tones are washing over you but then songs like Ophelia arrive and his voice seems to swell and grow until it is larger than life. No afraid to leave himself exposed to the world, Panes is a man who prides himself on the unique and heartfelt stylings with which he writes his prose. Whilst the music that he surrounds himself it irreplaceable, often his work seems to be more of an act of reciting incredible and charming stories and the music is simply there as a prop. This draws line between his poetic license and his musical attributes, highlighting both in a way that lets you focus your attention on each element in turn depending on your mood at the time.

Roo Panes is a stunning young musician with an unrivalled passion, deft fingers and an incredible power with words and while Quiet Man was a wonderful album the first time around, there is a refreshing power and honesty in the recently released deluxe edition that is hauntingly beautiful and charmingly powerful.

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Review by Joe Knipe


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