Totally Biased Fan Review: Charcoal and Ash – Aaron D’Arcy

Aaron D'Arcy.jpg

Not long after I arrived to live in Victoria, I went to a gig…..well, I went to a lot of gigs, where you see as many artists in the crowd as you do on the stage.  My mate introduced me to a bloke called Aaron D’Arcy.  The name sounded vaguely familiar…..then I slowly connected the dots….he was a member of Jeanie and had a song out with one of my favourite artists, Aleyce Simmonds……Bingo! Then, I bumped into Aaron at some more gigs and eventually got to hear him sing.

Long before I was a country music fan, I was a flower child folk music lover, a 60’s Rock and Roller and a blues music gal. If you combine all four genres, you get the earthy, gutsy little performer, Aaron D’Arcy. What I admire about Aaron, more than anything else,  is the way that he thinks. He is an ideas man. We were both at one of Allan Caswell’s songwriting workshops in Melbourne, recently and it was really amazing listening to his ideas and suggestions. I think that he will make a good decision maker in the years to come when they need administrators on a board or two for country music.

A lot of those thoughts, were, of course, creative ones. This album was well in the works at that workshop but I think that he was interested in hearing other people’s ideas and suggestions.

When you look into Aaron’s history and his technical work history, you can understand why the album is so polished and his outlook is so professional.

Before the release of the album, several singles have already been out there. The current one, Drink it Up, is doing great guns, and so it should.  Postcards with Dani Young has been a big smash and just about every Community Radio Station in Australia is flogging it. It has been a big hit. Summer Song and I give my heart to you (a personal favourite) have also been released previously as singles.

Running On Empty is not the Jackson Browne classic, but hopefully, it will be an Aaron D’Arcy classic.  It is a little bit different to the other songs on the album, a bit different in tempo and the guitars are much more twangy.  It is definitely up there with my favourites.

Aaron D’Arcy’s music has a certain groove to it. It is bluesy and gutsy, like the man himself but it varies with some interesting backbeat on songs like My Story Cries No More which is as interesting as its title. It has a really catchy tune and the words and phrasing are unique. It will be a song that gets into your head on two levels.

Where I Hide is probably the most “country” song on the album and I have heard him sing this before and I was hoping that it would be on here. This will be a singalong song at gigs and the arms will be swaying in the crowd for sure. Many beers will be drunk with this song…..and cheap wine, of course!

Aaron is a multi instrumentalist, and is qualified in sound engineering, which would explain all of the technical effects and production value.

He is not afraid to change things up. He warned me a little about some of the tracks – I think the words that he used were “there are a couple of songs that are way to the left” which could have meant a few things! The last track is one of these, I think, but there is a good spooky feeling about it….it his quite haunting. I have a feeling that the more times I play it, the more I will like it.

Aaron is an original. It is hard to compare him with others (and I am not a fan of doing that anyway, save to say that it does help the fans relate to an artist more in a review), however, he has a certain energy that is very rare and a sound that it different. He has elements of a lot of genres in his music, but chiefly, if you love the blues, this is your man.

You can pre-order Aaron’s album now, via iTunes or from Aaron’s website or send him a line or two on his facebook page.

If you get the opportunity to see Aaron LIVE, then don’t pass it up. He can mix his styles and he has a lot of energy. I think that he has a very big future ahead of him.



Drink It Up

I Give My heart to You

Postcards (Featuring Dani Young)

Summer Song

Running On Empty

My Story Cries No More

Where I Hide

God’s Gonna Cut You Down

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