Real Capital is the debut album by The Great I Am, AKA Graham Crossan, who called on a few of his friends, including members of Dirty Keys, Punch and The Apostles and Miaoux Miaoux to put it all together.
The presence of Julian Corrie (Miaoux Miaoux) is particularly noticeable, with him lending all sorts of electro bits and bobs to the odd numbered tracks. The even numbered tracks? Well, that's where things get really interesting. The beats and synths are left aside on these, on some occasions for a more full band treatment, on others for a stripped back guitar and vocals take.
Each style has it charms, and all are very well executed. Le Quark stands out as a highlight on the electro side, while Do Your Best, Pal is a good old fashioned rollicking, foot stomper, with fiddles adding a gorgeous folky feel. Vocally The Great I Am isn't the strongest, but enthusiasm, warmth and charisma comes across in spades, which is always more pleasing to my ears than being technically excellent.
Real Capital is all over the place musically, in the best way possible. The dramatic switch in styles from song to song works well and more importantly feels natural when it could have come across as gimmicky. Clocking in at around 20 minutes in length there's no risk of Real Capital outstaying its welcome either.
People who like their music to fit into a genre pigeonhole might be left scratching their head, but those of us who just like our music good, with a side helping of fun and a lack of pretensions, regardless of style are in for a bit of a treat.
Real Capital by The Great I Am is out now. Listen to and buy it on Bandcamp.