Forgotten Friends EP (High Resolution Master)

by S J Denney

/
  • Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

    The Hi-Res (24bit/96K) mastering of the 'Forgotten Friends EP' is as close as you can get to the sound of the studio. If hearing the highest possible sound quality is important to you, then this is where you’ll get it. The mastering was done by Nigel Palmer at Lowland Masters. The tracks have minimal EQ and no dynamic range compression. To allow for full dynamic range, and to let the music “breathe”, the Hi-Res version has about 6-8db less digital level than a typical “loud” peak-limited CD or mp3. To enjoy it to the fullest extent, play this record back though a good system and turn up the volume. With this increased level of detail and sonic impact, I hope you'll enjoy listening to the 'Forgotten Friends EP'.
    Purchasable with gift card

      £4.99 GBP  or more

     

1.
03:10
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

about

S J Denney is an Essex-based singer-songwriter. He performs folk music with an indie edge. Forgotten Friends is his latest EP, reviewed here by author, friend and long-time fan, Mark Cundy.

This new collection of songs brings together the best elements of S J’s Britpop and American songbook influences. What’s especially thrilling is how it draws on and refines his own style too.

There is a confidence to open the EP with the moderately paced 'Here I Am'. The song starts with a beautifully blended acoustic undercurrent and electric hook, underpinned by drums and bass outriders that subtly insist on your attention. Added to the standard sounds is a delightful cello, superbly played by Louise Dearsley. The weaving sympathy of the strings softens the harsher edges of this tough love lesson. And the emotional high point of the track is scored with a perfectly placed trumpet break from Rus Rogers.

'(Feels Like I’m…) Hearing Things' takes us out of the inward tensions of personal relationships and looks at the wider world. There is turmoil out there, which every screaming headline tells us daily. This track catches the mood. There is a notion of helplessness – but not hopelessness. Political paralysis often leads to social tensions and this is truly a song for our times.

'All the Signs Were There' provides a welcome change of pace. Breezy is not what you normally expect from this measured and driven artist, but it works. There’s no mistaking the attention to detail, great arrangement and polished delivery throughout this Beatles-inspired track. From the opening bars of bright acoustic guitars, the bass and drums irresistibly invite the listener to hitch onto this upbeat groove. When Denney’s voice joins the party, he’s the cheerleader for a determinedly optimistic ride.

What follows, is a remarkable vignette of a track. 'Forgotten Friends' clocks in at 97 seconds, but conveys so much in a dual delivery of quiet compassion and heart wrenching pleading. If that sounds depressing, it certainly isn’t. S J’s voice breaks new ground as he softly broaches feelings so delicate, matters so deeply rooted that he knows he needs to tread gently. It’s evocative of Springsteen at his most tender and Costello at his warmest.

'The Good Times' changes the pace again. A bad relationship flashes before our eyes as a relentlessly downbeat missive is fired across the wreckage. There’s still a hand reaching out, but with no anticipation of reconciliation. The sparse use of acoustic, deftly deployed bass and percussion keeps the mood intact throughout. This track reemphasises the theme of lessons learnt, with older and wiser perspectives reigning.

Next up is 'Where Darkness Hides', which is a joyful homage to The Smiths. This elegant arrangement, beautifully played by Denney and the assembled musicians provides the platform for a tale of two souls that will never settle into blissful coexistence, but who would be diminished without each other. Once again Roisin O’Hagan joins him on vocals and lifts the bittersweet tune to its emotional high.

'A Fond Farewell' brings the EP to a close. And just as 'Here I Am' had to be the opener, this is the natural finale. The music is a delight, with chord sequences that allow the piano, trumpet and bass to stretch out and provide a jazzy improv quality. You could imagine this as a 12-minute set piece at Ronnie Scott’s or at a Sunday club in New Orleans. The echoing outro harmonies and clever word play carry the quality right to the last beat. This is an arrangement that could only be written by someone who loves ‘the Fab Four’.

By surrounding himself with musicians of the same quality, S J has delivered another career-high release. The foundations of each track were recorded live and click-free, providing an extra dynamic that is often lacking from modern-day recordings. This time in the studio has been spent putting together something that effortlessly rises above what has gone before. We are now hearing the authentic voice of this highly talented singer-songwriter.

credits

released September 20, 2019

All songs written by S J Denney
All songs arranged by S J Denney & Mat Leppanen
Produced, engineered & mixed by Mat Leppanen at The Animal Farm
Mastered by Nigel Palmer at Lowland Masters

S J Denney - Vox, backing vox, acoustic guitar & percussion
Mat Leppanen - Electric guitar, piano, organ, bass guitar, drums & percussion
Ville Leppanen - Electric guitar
Roisin O'Hagan - Backing vox
Rus Rogers - Trumpet
Louise Dearsley - Cello

Concept & design by S J Denney
Cover image by Matt Gibson

license

all rights reserved

tags

about

S J Denney Leigh On Sea, UK

S J Denney is an Essex-based singer-songwriter.  He performs folk music with an indie edge.

contact / help

Contact S J Denney

Streaming and
Download help

Track Name: Here I Am
Open up your eyes
I’m standing right beside you
Don’t you realise that I’m there?

This room was built for two
I’m painting you a picture
That we could have been anywhere

I’m letting you know that I care
I’m not gonna let you forget me
I don’t wanna leave this to chance
And regret

I haven’t lost my mind
I’m looking to the future
We could have got there sooner
If we tried

We didn’t miss a beat
I tried my best to reach you
But then you drifted on, unaware

I’m letting you know that I care
I’m not gonna let you forget me
I don’t wanna leave this to chance
And regret

It’s time to take control
I’m dancing in the fire
I’ve heard you like a trier
Here I am
Here I am
Here I am
Track Name: (Feels Like I'm...) Hearing Things
Feels like I’m dreaming
And I can’t wake
Feels like we’re living
In a world that’s full of hate

We may be hurting
But things can change
They’ve got the numbers
That we need to rearrange...

…In a logical order
The pattern’s on the wall
I thought I heard you
Calling me...

Maybe I’m hearing things
But you can hear them too
Maybe I’m hearing things
But you can hear them too

Feels like I’m sinking
Under a wave
I don’t like fighting
But it’s better to be brave…

…Through all of this disorder
The sky above will fall
I thought I heard you
Calling me...

Maybe I’m hearing things
But you can hear them too
Maybe I’m hearing things
But you can hear them too

We’re flying underwater
Connecting space and time
I thought I saw you
Shining through...

Maybe I’m seeing things
And you can see them too
Maybe I’m hearing things
But you can hear them too

Feels like we’ve both been-
Stood here before
Feels like I’m hearing things
Of that, I can be sure
Track Name: All the Signs Were There/Forgotten Friends
It’s no use wishing on a rain cloud
You should be looking to a star
When it comes to it
You’ve got to follow my advice
When it comes to it
You don’t think twice

And when you’re waiting for tomorrow
You could be living for today
When it comes to it
You’ve got to open up your mind
If you look for it
Then you will find

When I tried telling you that all the signs were there
You didn’t listen, but you lived your life with care
If you had a choice
Would you believe me when I say-
“Every mountain points a different way”?

These are the lessons you’ve been learning
So don’t repeat the same mistakes
And though you recognise their faces
You don’t expect a warm embrace

When I tried telling you that all the signs were there
You didn’t listen, but you lived your life with care
And you may never be the one I thought you were
But something’s telling me you get what you deserve
If you had a choice
Would you believe me when I say-
“Every mountain points a different way”?

When it comes to it
You’ve got to follow my advice
When it comes to it
You don’t think twice
When it comes to it
You’ve got to open up your mind
If you look for it
Then you will find

When you feel alone, why don’t you say-
“There’s a feeling that I can’t explain
And it aches me to my bones
Then it breaks my heart in two”?

When you’re feeling like you can’t go on
Won’t you tell me that you need someone-
Who can take you by the hand-
If the black dog barks again?

This is a story of forgotten friends
If you’re thinking that it don’t make sense
Track Name: The Good Times
When it feels like things are slipping away
Remember
The good times are here to stay
I hope it isn’t too late, to reach you now
The lights are fading out

It’s a fine line that you’ve been walking along
Just trying to find out where you belong
When you were coming on strong
I told you that
I’m never going…

…Back to the water’s edge
Chasing better days
When all I needed was a friendly face
Thoughts are running through my head
Since you flew away
To a place where you belong

There’s a bright light that I’ve been following round
If ever you need me
I’m on your tail
You’ve had your head in a cloud, for far too long
Tomorrow you’ll be…

…Gone with the summer breeze
Flowing through your hair
Thank you for showing me you care
You’re falling like the autumn leaves
Scattered everywhere
Till the feeling moves you on

When it feels like things are slipping away
Remember
The good times are here to stay
I hope it isn’t too late, to reach you now
The lights are fading out
Track Name: Where Darkness Hides
It’s the feelings that I’m showing
It’s the knowing that you care
See the rain against my window
Then you’ll understand my pain

We both know it’s true
You’re taking sides
But I’m asking you to wait
When the darkness hides
Where darkness hides

When your atoms are colliding
Mine align into a row
There’s a reason why we landed
And we’re stranded in this time

We both know it’s true
You’re taking sides
But I’m asking you to wait
When the darkness hides
Where darkness hides

Now we’re running round in circles
Jumping hurdles in my mind
But we can’t escape the shadows of love

We both know it’s true
You’re taking sides
But I’m asking you to wait
When the darkness hides
Where darkness hides
Track Name: A Fond Farewell
A morning comes
Shining through your window
The sound of drums
Knocking at your door
Every day
We’ve got to chase the demons all away

I heard a voice
Coming out of nowhere
I made my choice
To give me peace of mind
Every day
We’ve got to chase the demons all away

Day by day
We’re dreaming of the one that got away
Day by day
We’re dreaming of the one that got away

Every day
We’ve got to chase the demons all away

Day by day
We’re dreaming of the one that got away

Time will tell
If we’re gonna make it
A fond farewell
Doesn’t mean goodbye
Everyday
We’ve got to chase the demons all away

Day by day
We’re dreaming of the one that got away
Day by day
We’re dreaming of the one that got away

Time will tell
A fond farewell
Time will tell
A fond farewell

Give me something to say
Give me something to think about again
Give me something to dream about

Time will tell

Give me something to say
Give me something to talk about again
Give me something to dream about

Time will tell
A fond farewell