Review: Charlie Winston – Running Still
France’s Charlie Winston releases his latest album Running Still this week to much anticipation from his fans and also the press who welcomed his last album Hobo (2009) with such fervent gusto.
The album opens with Hello Alone, a glorious track that you can immerse yourself into putting a clever twist on the concept that loneliness isn’t an emotion but is in a sense a person which paradoxically should make you feel less alone. This is by no means an original concept, Otis Redding did the same on Sitting On The Dock of the Bay in 1968 with the lyric “sitting here resting my bones, but this loneliness won’t leave me alone” however, Winston’s use of this technique is brilliant. He juxtaposes such a sad theme with relatively mid-tempo beat thus making it sound upbeat. It is quite simply a sensational opening track.
Other songs that stand out on the album include Happiness and She Went Quietly. The strength of both of these tracks comes from the lyric content. Happiness links the emotion with consumerism and is an almost satirical look at how modern society believes they can achieve happiness. She Went Quietly is achingly sad. The story of the song makes you stop and take a breath. The velvety smoothness of Winston’s vocals enraptures you. The lyrics almost read as a eulogy, softly spoken and with no fussy production; just simple piano accompaniment.
The album as a whole is really entertaining however certain tracks sound overly produced with whizzbangs and goodads. The songs are great without the need for all the extra bells and whistles. And the strength of the album relies on Winston’s ability to deliver a solid vocal performance on his slower numbers.
Charlie Winston is offering fans a chance to download one of the tracks off Running Still before it is released – just go to the following link – https://soundcloud.com/realworldrecords/charlie-winston-lift-me-1
Running Still by Charlie Winston is available 28th January 2013