Hot on the heels of ‘Take The Sunlight’ and ‘River Running With Me’, comes his third EP of the year, the delicate ‘Patterns’. It’s lower key than the previous releases – out go the strings and widescreen arrangements, and in come eerie atmospheres, stacked harmonies and lovely acoustic guitar work.
The title track opens up the EP and Wilkes’ world-weary voice baritone is getting better all the time. “No-one seems to listen,” he breathes into the mic, as a calming melody makes you think about what lies beneath the surface. It’s a cinematic opening and sets the scene for what follows.
Tunes like the intimate ‘Which Way Is Home’ are held up by intricate acoustic guitar and the breathy vocal Wilkes has developed, while ‘Catch You’ provides light in the darkness, bouncing along on a Bert Jansch-esque finger picked melody and the EP’s catchiest chorus (think John Martyn’s ‘May You Never’).
‘Patterns’ is the most lo-fi of Wilkes’ output this year and entirely the better for it. It’s a headphones record, one which will speak to you above the clatter of public transport or whisper you to sleep at night. Just remember to listen closely.
Paul Wilkes will be launching the EP at Songwriters at the Lantern #3 on Wednesday 25th November at the Lantern Theatre, with support from Mark Byrne. This is the third in a series of events brought to you by Mellowtone and Liverpool Acoustic where songwriters are able to tell the stories behind their songs and their musical journeys. Tickets are available from mellowtone.skiddletickets.com