Listening to Rueben Hollebon's Clutch EP, the British singer/songwriter's seven song convergence of gospel and folk, you get the sense that this is an artist who relishes, and probably flourishes, in solitude. He forms magical songs around acoustic guitar melodies and his Bon Iver-reminiscent falsetto, both of which sound dragged clawing and screaming from his heart. But it's not just in the solitary aspect of his recordings that he writes like the last scion of Transcendentalism: songs like “Holy” and “On Faith” are his attempt at searching for godliness in earthly things, rather than any church. Of course, it's hard not to think of Henry David Theroux with music this bucolic, that's layered but with space for each part to breathe. In the same way that a forest full of singing crickets still permits you to hear the stag nosing around in the distance, Hollebon doesn't allow a tambourine or a spot of electronic distortion to just pass over you. They're all a part of Hollebon's ongoing journey to define himself from within himself, and his progress is inspiring to behold.
- CHART TV