Canadian Singer-songwriter and multi-genre-bending musician Ariel Posen returns with his latest offering Headway March 5th. Posen for many could be an unknown quantity and has been working in the shadows for many a year but equally has built up a sizeable following with sumptuous guitar work especially in the often lesser tackled “slide guitar” speciality.
I actually had the pleasure of seeing Posen live in April 2019 at the Ards (Newtownards) Guitar Festival where he was playing a supporting role to local hero Simon McBride who was receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award on that evening and it allowed me to hear Ariel first hand and appreciate the reputation which proceeded him. Posen’s style really does ebb and flow where his needs take him, so you are never really boxed within his recordings that you have to be a Blues fan or a Rock fan and this allows you to simply absorb whatever he throws at you via the live environment or a studio recording.
Headway is no exception, dripping in his signature slide-work all fused with easy in the ear melodic songwriting that just envelops you track by track, there is a soulful quality to the song’s, emotive and heart-wrenching at times, tracks like ‘Nobody Else’ just grip you from the off. There is an ethereal quality to the simplicity that Posen brings to his music that you know is anything but simplistic in both production nor execution, and for me, that is the sign of real quality musicianship that makes Posen an artist that really needs to be on your radar. Throughout the album, you can pull on similarities of artists like rootsy acoustic balladeers like Matt Andersen and Pop/Rock/Blues/Americana aficionado’s like John Mayer but Posen does it all in his own unique way that rightfully stands him shoulder to shoulder to the greats of their genres.
There isn’t a weak track on this album, beautifully written with production to match which simply allows you to shut out all of life’s crazy distractions and just immerse yourself in the twelve sonic beauties just for a little while.
Headway is released this coming Friday, March 5th and available from all purveyors of fine music.