Recently, the good folk at Outline asked us, “Mr Alphabet Sir (they are very polite like that) which Norwich act are you most excited to hear more from in 2016?”. As Norwich is undergoing something of a boom time for exciting new acts, this was not a straightforward question but there is one guy we heard a little from last year who left us wanting more: Edward F Butler.
When asked to explain why, we said (on page 29 of the new issue if you want to check it out – and other people’s tips) ”Blending glitchy electronics and gorgeously dark R&B influences [his music] is soulful pop music with an edge to it.” Which regular readers will know is right up our street. We knew, at the time we were asked, that Edward was planning an EP release this year. What we didn’t know was how quickly it would be coming and the extent of his grand plans for 2016.
Apparently EP ONE is to be just a taste of what is to come. He plans to release a new song and video each month, an EP every quarter and then a “wonderfully Arty Visual Album” comprised of the best bits at the end of the year. Woof.
If indeed EP ONE is just a taste then we could be in for an aural culinary treat in the coming months. Lead track “Futures Full” (which also features Katharine Philippa) cavorts with darkness as it rises up and plunges down, a rollercoaster of electronics, keys and pulsating, cascading beats. His music bounces about in that fabulous head nodding way that will have you moving without even realising. “Bank Heist Debut” has this low rumbling edge to it, an undercurrent of vibration and drama (perhaps the sound of boring into a hatton garden vault) that is deliciously ominous.
There’s something of Leon Else in the way he sings, dark, dusty and emotive, the vocals feel strained (in a good way) and stirring. “Kinfolk” and “Bank Heist Debut” see him reaching out almost in anguish, sounding pained and wonderful.
Eight days into 2016 and our Norwich tip is already delivering, it’s going to be a good year.
’EP ONE” is out now and available from Edward F Butler’s Bandcamp page.