Published Jan 13, 2017On his debut release, Danny Through Junior, Sam Skinner steps into the position of singer and songwriter — one typically helmed by his Pinegrove bandmate Evan Stephens Hall. Led by vocals lightly tinged with Auto Tune and meticulously strummed guitar, the five-track EP showcases Skinner's thoughtful musicianship but doesn't quite delve deep enough to full resonate with listeners.
Adding Auto Tune to Skinner's melancholic vocals may help spruce it up, but it also strips away some of its depth and emotion; Skinner's artistry is demonstrated so effectively within each track's textured production and gentle instrumentation that it feels like an unnecessary addition. The short, instrumental piece "Daniel" is powerful in its simplicity, with each delicate pluck of the guitar strings reverberating like a gentle lullaby, while the calming twang of a banjo and continuous swell of harmonies in EP closer "Stout" comfortably carries the listener out.
Skinner's experience in mixing and mastering is emphasized on Danny Through Junior, a textured collection of music that strays away from direct narratives and takes more of a conceptual approach. (Soft Speak)