Genre(s): Pop, Acoustic, Singer/Songwriter
Produced by: Rossen Nedelchev
Storyteller is the debut EP by Mariya, a London-based singer/songwriter. It was released in 2013 and it is as inspired as it comes. Far from being just another pop/acoustic/singer/songwriter album, each song captures quirky and vivid snapshot-like moments and is backed by spectacular arrangements. While Coffee and Drunk are the edgier tracks of the EP, the simplicity behind the hooks in Goodnight and Liar are just as refreshing.
Coffee opens with piano notes that are doleful in a completely alluring way. Mariya’s soft, almost distant-sounding vocals complement the melody, especially as it grows more intricate by the minute. It might take a while for you even pay attention to the lyrics as the tone and vibe of the song alone is completely captivating.
The militaristic percussion takes over, gradually succeeded by the trombone and clarinet that livens up the pace of the track; making you feel momentarily airborne. The final segment, however, takes it a bit too far; completely undoing the feeling of sobriety that characterized the first half.
This song definitely has rhythm! Without being poppy or outrageously catchy, it’s a track you may warm up to instantly. The chorus is well structured and lyrically vivid, and Mariya’s vocals are most soulful at this juncture.
While it starts out with the piano and subtle but engaging vocals that capture the nuances of the song, the trumpet is eventually brought in which adds an additional layer of richness to the track.
Goodnight is the most upbeat track of the EP! Mariya’s vocals are wonderfully animated, bringing the happily predictable lyrics to life. The chorus is the kind you sing along to with beats characteristic of any pop melody. It is sunny and free spirited but does not feel as deliberately arranged as the previous songs.
Still, this matters the least as this song begs you to just sit back and live in the moment being described!
“I should’ve known it wasn’t real/You’re a storyteller,” Mariya sings in this winning melody that, like Goodnight, is immediately fulfilling in terms of beat and lyrics. What more, it combines the best of the previous tracks: featuring gorgeous vocals and stunning instrumentation. The piano notes and standard beats, when nearing the last segment, blend with the sound of the violin; a point at which the track is at its peak!
Lies is more mainstream than Coffee and Drunk, but at the same time feels weightier in comparison to Goodnight. A balanced effort that contains all the elements that define this singer/songwriter!
Verdict: Storyteller has got the story and the pipes! A worthy debut!
Picks of the EP: Drunk, Lies