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James Apollo
'Til Your Feet Bleed
The Orchard
www.jamesapollo.com


James Apollo has one of those haunting melancholy voices that render timing a weighted factor for enjoyment - his whispering vocals accompanying best a rainy day, rolled cigarettes, and black coffee. A darker and less fragile version of Jeff Buckley, Apollo's vocals are consistently deep and luring, while maintaining an element of seduction. He uses clever instrumental breakdowns and introductions to break up his melodramatic phrasing, while relying on slightly out-of-tune old uprights and rich clarinet sounds to keep things interesting. A classic love lullaby, "How Hard" beautifully demonstrates Apollo's diverse phrasing and knack for nailing instrumental breakdowns. While lacing lap steel softly throughout the background, Apollo's vocals moan securely over top - sounding something like a Joe Cocker anthem. His deep vibrato in songs like "The Bottom" separates his sound from artists like Amos Lee, allowing his vocals to sound as tear-filled as the songs yield.

Word savvy and equally conscious, Apollo is quite the lyricist. Focusing heavily on textured themes of love lost and substance abuse, his moody and ambient music is for the heavy-hearted. Hardly suitable for a sunny day's drive, I would recommend
James Apollo to anyone searching for the perfect soundtrack to a rocky road.

-Mackenzie Grosser

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