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September 2020 (Arlo Parks)
Review

Jack River - Sugar Mountain

'Sugar Mountain' is a classic waiting to happen.
Jack River - Sugar Mountain
Published: 9:12 pm, June 20, 2018
'Sugar Mountain' is a classic waiting to happen.

Label: Hopeless Utopian
Released: 22nd June 2018
Rating: ★★★★

There's something special littered all across Holly Rankin, aka Jack River's debut full-length; 'Sugar Mountain' feels like a pop masterpiece written by the mind of a songwriter. Having released a few banger-worthy singles already ('Fools Gold', 'Ballroom' and 'Fault Line'), it's actually quite handy that these are out of the way as the album that's crafted around them is undying in its ability to keep you guessing.

The intricate-sounding opener 'Her Smile' offers little insight into the raging river that you're soon swept away on. Continuing its poptastic ravaging, it builds and builds, winding throughout the occasional sample-led interlude. Showing Holly's real talent across a variety of instruments, there's a little bit of everything here. 'Stardust & Rust' is a piano-led number that glimmering with a gritty beauty, much like the rest of the album, while there's always the odd guitar cropping up ('Confess'), or just straight up electronic elements.

It's pop that feels approachable, where the heart is most certainly worn on its sleeve, and nothing is off limits. Perfectly and meticulously crafted, 'Sugar Mountain' is a classic waiting to happen. Steven Loftin

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