Charley James is a singer-songwriter from North Carolina and this is his debut EP Baby We’re Optimists, Remember? Each of the five songs featured are personal little gems to Charley, and range from a number of topics such as love, youth and existential dread. A cheerful listen, no doubt.
The title track kicks off the EP with a sombre, eerie sound as synths combine with electronic beats to create an instrumental that wants to be Pop but cannot stop wearing black. Charley’s vocals croon endlessly on top, and the subtle additions of percussion really help beef out the instrumental. Despite it’s ominous sound, the track does have an element of groove to it and opens up the EP is a big way.
‘Because She Loves You’ offers more of the same, with a beat that’s possibly even more ominous. It skulks through the airwaves but does lighten up once again with the occasional hint of female vocals in the background, once again driving home the Pop desire. The chorus is definitely catchy, and does turn this EP from an intriguing listen into one that’s accessible.
Baby We’re Optimists, Remember? Is a very interesting listen. Charley James does a great job at creating a sound that’s subtle and ambitious all at once. The opening two tracks are brooding little numbers that have elements of Pop to them, but it’s the likes of ‘Dreams in Grayscale’ and ‘Unfinished Song #34’ that really expand on what’s trying to be achieved. The EP is interesting, it’s intriguing, it’s entertaining, and that’s kind of what you want from an artist on his debut record. Nice work.