‘A303’ from Greg Hancock - something both beautiful and powerful(September 25, 2017)
Many lyrics are referred to as ‘thoughtful’ either describing the messages they convey or in reference to the ‘thought’ the artist has poured into their creation. The songs of singer-songwriter Greg Hancock cover both bases ... through idiosyncratic pin-sharp lyrics delivered with a contemplative laid-back style set across distinctive, sometimes quirky melodies. The mix includes folk, jazz and pop. The result is something you should hear.
His latest album ‘A303’ (yes that’s right, the trunk road running between Basingstoke in Hampshire and Honiton in Devon via Stonehenge). I’m guessing that like many of us Hancock has spent many a reflective hour wrestling with its traffic ... the difference is Hancock’s satirically focused worldview enables him to build stories based on observations, contemplation and musings that reach him along the way.
‘A303’ is a collection of narrative-driven songs to make you think. Hancock moves through sadness and sorrow, sarcasm and sensitivity, reminiscences and recollections with his stories, each one a tiny cameo that takes the listener into his world. He writes with a sharpness of view that makes the smallest observations precious and timeless. Listen to the eponymous ‘A303’, the insight of ‘The Other Side’, the brutal honesty of ‘An Arbitary Line’ or the deeply felt understanding of ‘12’. There’s the melancholy of ‘Elizabeth’, quiet nostalgia in ‘The Longest Night’ and for true jolt of human reality there’s ‘Fremington Beach’.
With ‘A303’ Greg Hancock has created something both beautiful and powerful ... beautiful in its sensitivity and powerful in the way reveals its stories and lays them bare.
Review: Tim Carroll