Needle Drop: Tom Wardle, “Jacqueline”

British singer-songwriter Tom Wardle creates plaintive and powerful country-rock, full of grit and golden-hued ’70s vibes.

The title-track from his gorgeous little 5 song EP, “Jacqueline,” is Wardle at his best, throwing his husky voice around like Rod Stewart in his heyday, milking his melodies over a jangly bed of drums and glowing organ. His soulful cry is suited for this kind of ballad, which reaches anthemic heights without losing the feeling of being grounded in reality. It’s no wonder that Tom has become fixture at high-end events around the globe with spins on the BBC and celebrity endorsements becoming a regular thing.

The “Jacqueline” EP arrived in stores this past February and features a set of impressive Americana-leaning gems and even a dip into reggae. All these tracks are worth a listen and provide a more upbeat approach than “Jacqueline,” and come across as raw, potent, and unprocessed. Wardle is one of the more promising crooners in recent years and it is clear that he knows how to play on his strengths, especially when given the space to serve the song in an intimate, slow burning way as he does on “Jacqueline.”

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