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Gordon Thomas Ward’s Providence EP Review

Gordon Thomas Ward Providence Cover

The cover for Gordon Thomas Ward’s folk EP, ‘Providence.’

Artist: Gordon Thomas Ward

EP: ‘Providence’

Recorded at Charlestown Studios in Hampton, New Jersey; Eric Troyer: Engineer and co-producer; Paul Wickliffe: Mastering

Crafting introspective stories that are driven from the heart of humanity’s shared journey isn’t always an emotionally easy process for musicians. But singer-songwriter Gordon Thomas Ward, who has been dubbed New Jersey’s Troubadour by his fans, naturally addresses the fleeting beauty and trials of life, which are enhanced and enriched by the passage of time, on his new second album, ‘Providence.’ In honor of the release’s upcoming distribution on August 30, the musician distributed a stunning five-track EP earlier this month that previews some of the record’s best entries.

The ‘Providence’ EP features a unique and noteworthy blend of contemporary folk rock, adult alternative and Americana lyrics and instrumentation. Ward also masterfully interweaves quiet acoustic songs with more driving, electric pieces that creatively emphasize a stunning country flair. The EP is fueled by emotionally compelling and intelligent messages that illustrate both the successes and struggles that everyone must contend with in their lives.

The opening entry on the ‘Providence’ EP is the soulful ‘Acadia Lament – Names Into Stones,’ which features precise acoustic instrumentation, particularly the violin and classical guitar. The song is enthrallingly reflective on where people are in their lives. The singer-songwriter’s contemplative lyrics aren’t introduced until approximately two-and-a-half minutes into the almost six-and-a-half minute track, which ultimately pays off. Backed by an increasingly rock vibe with edgy drums, Ward reveals that he’s immersed in what he’s passionate about, and what he truly values.

‘Acadia Lament – Names Into Stones’ then delves into the EP’s sophomore tune, ‘Destiny.’ The Americana and rock-infused piece focuses on themes of consciousness and exploration, as people search for the meaning of their lives. The country ballad, which is comparable to James Taylor and Neil Young’s signature songs, chronicles how years have flown by, but people are still wondering where their lives have gone. While people don’t always instantly recognize the good things in their lives, they eventually come to value their experiences.

The next entry on the ‘Providence’ EP is the minimalist and acoustic-driven song, ‘Just One More.’ The musician sentimentally reminds his listeners to live their lives as honestly as possible, and cherish their good family bonds, as relatives often grow apart as they get older. The nostalgic track further notes that people who love each other should capture every moment together while they’re still conected.

The penultimate tune on Ward’s latest EP is ‘The Horseman,’ which is driven by a slide acoustic guitar, violin and fiddle, and an edgy rock-country vibe and darker atmosphere. The singer emotionally croons about how the title man meets his fate in war, and as a result, his wandering soul was never saved. The song is a powerful reminder on how ever-lasting negative effects can be left on people in harrowing situations.

The ‘Providence’ EP ends with its best entry, ‘One Kiss.’ While minimalist, the tracks crafts a story about the different kinds of love which span a lifetime. Ward once again urges his listeners to enjoy every moment with those people who are present in their lives.

Also fueled by a James Taylor-vibe, the EP’s last tune chronicles how first love from adolescence in particular can stand a moment in time, even if the couple is no longer together. The musician seems to be singing from experience, and is holding onto the best memories from his first love, and appreciates the best times they had together. While he wishes that bond could have lasted forever, he also still appreciates the lessons it has taught him about life.

Creating thoughtful and contemplative stories that are driven from the heart of humanity’s shared journey isn’t always an emotionally simple process for musicians. But Ward effortlessly addresses the fleeting beauty and trials of life, which are enhanced and enriched by the passage of time, on his latest EP, ‘Providence.’ The EP features a rare blend of contemporary folk rock, adult alternative and Americana lyrics and instrumentation, which are fueled by earnest messages that illustrate both the successes and struggles that everyone must contend with in their lives.

For more information on Ward, visit his official website, as well as his Facebook and Twitter pages.

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As a life-long fan of entertainment, particularly films, television and music, and an endless passion for writing, Karen Benardello decided to combine the two for a career. She graduated from New York's LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic. While still attending college, Karen began writing for Shockya during the summer of 2007, when she began writing horror movie reviews. Since she began writing for Shockya, Karen has been promoted to the position of Senior Movies & Television Editor. Some of her duties in the position include interviewing filmmakers and musicians, producing posts on celebrity news and contributing reviews on albums and concerts. Some of her highlights include attending such festivals and conventions as the Tribeca Film Festival, the New York Film Festival, SXSW, Toronto After Dark, the Boston Film Festival and New York Comic-Con.

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