Review: Front Porch Step, ‘Whole Again’
Review by: Josh Weisner
Front Porch Step is a one man songwriting powerhouse. His initial rise to fame came to be when a heartfelt video for “Island Of The Misfit Boy” took the internet by storm. In the time between then and now, he’s signed to Pure Noise Records and released a full-length album that showcased just a what a talented songwriter he truly is.
His newest EP ’Whole Again’ is another release that has made his talent very clear. The album is packed with tons of emotion and tasteful chord progressions that we’ve come to know and love from Front Porch Step. As expected, Jake McElfresh hits us hard with those beautiful raspy vocals of his. Just listening to his voice makes it impossible to want to turn the record off.
With an upbeat first track, “A Lovely Mess” creates a vivid picture of a man trying to sway a woman into loving him. A cute love story that is perfect for a silver screen; a woman doesn’t notice the man but he wants to take a shot at love just to see if it would work between the two of them. This is the perfect combination of catchy, childish, adorable, and serious. The bridge was very well written transitioning into the final chorus but they are childish lyrics done correctly. Clearly this guy is head over heels in love with this girl and he would do absolutely anything to win her heart and make her happy for all of eternity.
The second song, “Heaven Sent” is just as depressing as its name. It has an honest and heartfelt story of heartbreak that just breaks the listeners’ hearts but it displays such an emotional sense of vulnerability. “Whether I was right or I was wrong/Or which of us hung up the phone/I just had to write this song/So I could just feel less alone” might just be the most sad and emotional bridge of a song, but you can clearly tell this man is dying of a broken heart and he is slowly killing himself by drinking himself to sleep or simply crying himself to sleep; despite its depressing story, the song still remains catchy and one that anyone with a broken heart can relate to.
The third of four tracks was the surprise for the holidays, “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” and while it is much different than what we traditionally hear, McElfresh’s raspy vocals are so fitting for this song. With just an acoustic guitar, bells, and a few harmonies, this cover is just too perfect and gets me going with a case of the holiday spirit!
To wrap things up, the last song is definitely my favorite off of the EP. ’Whole Again’ is an acoustic blues song and the chord progression is absolutely fantastic and the vocals are over the top, heartfelt, and exactly what the blues are about. To round the song out, there were added drums and guitar parts to fill some gaps and make this a true blues gem. I was blown away when I heard this for the first song because I didn’t know that someone could show so much passion in an acoustic setting.
’Whole Again’ was perfect beyond words and I look forward to the next full-length from this one man powerhouse. Acoustic music doesn’t usually tickle my fancy but I must say I was tickled and give “Whole Again” a 5/5 for creativity and being an actual artist; perfect lyrics backed by the perfect chords and vocal tone… Well done!