Album Review: Luke Leighfield – New Season

24-year old singer-songwriter Luke Leighfield’s latest album, ‘New Season’ proves to be a highly compelling record that simply takes you on a heavenly musical journey. 

Anyone who is familiar with Leighfield’s work will know he is entirely independent; he releases material through his own label Got Got Need Records and has financed this album through donations by fans.

For new listeners, Luke’s style is a mix of piano-led pop-rock, which is similar to Jack’s Mannequin and Relient K, to the sombre, mellow sounds that the likes of Ben Folds produces. Whilst Leighfield’s previous releases easily fit into these comparisons, ‘New Season’ takes a more dynamic, polished approach with the final result being grander, more concentrated and more mature. 

From the opening piano keys of ‘Slow Down,’ you’re anticipating something exceptional, and with it’s aching tone that brilliantly builds to an over-powering conclusion, it thankfully delivers. With crashing drums and choir-like vocals bringing the track home, it’s clear to say ‘New Season’ starts on the highest of highs.

The title track follows and showcases Leighfield’s pop-rock capabilities in a strong light. It’s bouncy tempo and vibrant chorus nicely brings the album alive. ‘Time’ also benefits from this approach, as Luke’s introspective lyrics are complimented well alongside his backing bands upbeat style.

<a href=“http://lukeleighfield.bandcamp.com/album/new-season” data-mce-href=“http://lukeleighfield.bandcamp.com/album/new-season”>New Season by Luke Leighfield</a>

Nevertheless it’s the album’s more calmer, potent moments that make their mark. For example ‘Whispering’ is beautifully haunting that demands attention, especially with the simple yet poignant line of “you are quiet but you are there.” Whilst the striking strings and pounding drums towards the end, give the track a powerful, (slightly) intense edge. 

Although on paper Leighfield comes across as just a piano-playing, singer-songwriter, it is clear he is more ambitious on this record. Throughout you’ll find sensible uses of strings (see ‘Patience’) and brass instruments, and as previously stated ‘New Season’ is a more focused record that ebbs and flows at a nice pace, which allows the listener to take each track as intended. 

‘Garde Ta Foy’ combines the pleasing simplicity of ‘The One Thing’ and ‘Whispering’ and combines it with the compelling, engaging ‘Slow Down’ to create an awe-inspiring number that slowly builds and leaves hanging to Leighfield’s every word, up to the point where it bursts with proud horns and thriving drums. 

With ‘New Season,’ Luke Leighfield has exceeded expectations and has delivered a concise record that carries itself with good momentum from start to finish. Lyrically he is wiser and musically more focused, something which is very much apparent after watching the documentary film, ‘Seasons’ which documents the making of the record. The album and film both show how much effort, detail and care puts into his music, and with ‘New Season’ his persistent has paid off. An astounding record that delivers in abundance. 

5/5

‘New Season’ by Luke Leighfield is available now on Got Got Need Records.

Luke Leighfield links: Official Website|Facebook|Twitter|Bandcamp|Soundcloud

Words by Sean Reid

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