29 Feb 2020
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Rob Joass - Album Review: Pencarrow

28 Feb 2019 // A review by Darryl Baser

Pencarrow is the third album released by musician Rob Joass, who calls the Kapiti Coast home, or Turangawaiwai, if you will.

With more than 25 years as a musician under his belt he’s no stranger to writing, playing and recording music to a high standard.

Pencarrow continues this tradition for him. On first, second and third listens it is easy to call him a songwriter’s songwriter, much like some of the other songwriters he looks up to including Australian songwriting legend Paul Kelly, but more about him later.

The song, The Sweet Unknown, features the phrase: “Let’s hear it for the angels watching over us”, which is repeated like a chant of a mantra, and has a hypnotic quality. Sometimes a songwriter’s greatest gift is to know which words to repeat, and it works really well in the above example.

Overall it sounds like this album was recorded in a high quality home studio, and it has a very live feel. It is pretty much Joass and his guitar, with a few over dubs providing melodies which weave around the central tune of each piece.

Train, Train is one of the more up-tempo songs on the album, and even though it’s like many others and only really guitar and vocal, the song chugs along with a rhythm not dissimilar from a train.

One song which stands out is his version of the Paul Kelly penned When I First Met Your Ma. It’s a faithful version which retains the charm and beauty of the original yet Joass has definitely made the song his own.

The mix and mastering of Pencarrow is beautifully done, understated and allows the songs to breathe.

Rob Joass is taking Pencarrow on tour around Aotearoa from March to May, and it would be well worth a listen live.

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )
 

About Rob Joass

Rob Joass writes compulsively, tours incessantly, teaches guitar, produces albums, and can be found behind a mixing desk live and in the studio when time allows.

Rob moved to New Zealand from his native Sydney over 25 years ago. Since then he has maintained a consistently high profile in folk music circles in New Zealand, having released 10 albums with his bands Hobnail, Too Many Chiefs and The Shot Band, and touring the country regularly. He has been a finalist at the NZ music awards 3 times (twice for best country song, once for best folk album) and has had songs covered by bands in New Zealand and Canada.


Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Rob Joass

Releases

Pencarrow
Year: 2019
Type: Album
Black And White
Year: 2014
Type: Album

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