Sometimes it is the smallest and seemingly most inconsequential detail that speaks volumes, and in the case of Ed Roman’s latest album it is that glorious chuckle that precedes the titular opening salvo, a metaphor for the sheer joyousness of what is about to happen. The term singer-songwriter often conjures thoughts of overly earnest, major melancholia put to minor chords, well, I’m happy to report that Ed Roman is not that kind of guy.
There is a fantastically infectious party vibe running through his brand of acoustic pop, it is bright, groovesome and built on slick rhythms and confident beats, exactly the sort of music that is the perfect backlash to years of beard stroking, acoustic insularity and maybe as the perfect distraction soundtrack to these difficult times to come.
But as if to prove that songs can be big and clever, smart and sassy, Ed is the master of making fun and accessible music that actually has a lot of depth. Most songs are based on wonderfully jaunty guitar work but listen a bit closer and you will hear influences from all over the globe from flamenco flourishes to Balkan beats, Americana meanderings to folky finesse. Lyrically it also covers a lot of ground and manages to switch between tongue in cheek narratives to emotionally rich reflections.
The ability to be simultaneously high-brow and frivolous, throw away and deep, delicate and dexterous, all at the same time is not an easy feat but it is this effortless and magical mix which serves him so well.