Quotidian Dream (Independent)
Softly-spoken songwriter Sam Tudor might have dubbed his new album “quotidian”, but the record is far from mundane. Kicking off the LP with alt-folk ballad “New Apartment”, an ode to self-imposed isolation, Tudor displays his penchant for everything left-field by blending wistful acoustic guitar melodies with light string harmonies and a middle-eight breakdown lead by a velvety clarinet solo—a choice that’s hardly run of the mill.
Nothing, in fact, is pedestrian about Quotidian Dream. Different genres abound on the record—and while that experimentalism often trips up young musicians, Tudor’s mellow vocals and captivating stories tie each track to the next. The humorous ditty “Brain Stealers” sees programmed drums meld with Spanish guitar riffs to build a Hawaiian hula feel, while “Joseph in the Bathroom” wouldn’t seem out of place on Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge Over Troubled Water. “Blue Flower”, however, takes a different tack, sporting a powerful riff with shimmering, chorused guitar that sounds like a clean-cut, 1967 Jefferson Airplane. Not one song feels out of place.
Despite his versatility, the artist’s stripped-down, singer-songwriter folk is where he really shines. With a turn of phrase that often elevates his lyrics to poetry, Tudor displays a maturity that belies his age. “Clinical names are taking all my friends away”, he croons on one track, juxtaposing the line’s poignancy with warm guitar riffs and chorus of “aahs”.
With its rich, medium-fi feel, the album has a timeless quality—a gem that could have been produced from the late sixties up to the present. Nevertheless, the real timing of the release seems deliberately scheduled, with the LP’s relaxed sophistication chiming perfectly with the onset of fall.
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