Marten de Paepe - Boskoop

we start to get a glimpse of just what this guy may be capable of

Now here’s a nice little surprise. A year or so ago, some of us here at Incendiary saw Marten de Paepe play a charming little house concert in Leiden. There were about twenty or so people there, huddled around on sofas, chairs and whatever part of the floor we could squeeze ourselves into and while he certainly made an effect on the female demographic in the room (he’s a handsome fella), we came away thinking we’d just seen a  guy with a lot of potential. I bought the cd he was flogging out of his guitar case and brought it home, hoping to hear something more developed than the gentle acoustic numbers we’d heard that night. Sadly, I was disappointed. Although the songs still had charm they were recorded without much care and where some of the songs were crying out to have a full band behind them , there was nothing. Of course, that may have come down to what he could afford to record at the time but that little release actually did some of his songs a disservice.

Fast forward to the present and Marten’s managed to find a deal, some friends and some further studio time. Here, finally, we start to get a glimpse of just what this guy may be capable of.  There’s a kind of Ryan Adams vibe surrounding the whole album, which is no bad thing, so fans of country tinged singer/songwriters should start to pay attention immediately. What You Need This Silence For is a charming little opener,  and I wonder if the girl providing backing vocals is the same girl who helped out on glockenspiel back at that house concert? No matter, it’s a pleasing way to kick off the album. In the Morning carries on in a similar vein, although it’s a bit heavy handed with it’s time changes. Elsewhere it’s all pretty steady flowing, with Used Cars probably the stand out track.

Marten’s not going to blow your socks off or get you all worked up in a hurry but there’s enough muscle on the bones of these tunes  for you to recognize that, if he can really knuckle down and develop his craft, this guy may well be able to make a career of this after all.

It’s good to see a guy getting a break.