Free Music Download: Paul Sottnik "The Batavia Sessions"
Wed, 15 Feb 2017 10:55:48
There is a level of humility, and an atmosphere of purely curious expression on this week's free music download. Paul Sottnik is a singer songwriter currently residing in Buffalo, NY, and he works in a small scale — where his intimate folk tunes resonate through DIY recordings and songs of refreshingly unspoiled perspectives.
This collection — The Batavia Sessions — contains just three songs, and you'd be forgiven for feeling the offering is small — but size isn't everything. These songs, with their carefully captured sense of time and place, are genuine treasures.
Describing his songs, and the location of their recording Sottnik said, "I had just graduated college and was unsure of what was coming in the future, where I would work, or what I was going to do. I made a strange choice to move to Batavia, NY where I lived there for 6 months. These are the highlights of songs that I recorded there in my bedroom."
The sense of curation, like an artist who is showing his best expressions from a period of time, is evident through this collection. Breaking his work into pockets of time, Sottnik appeals to the 'everyman' in us — he articulates the emotions and experiences that we've all felt, to some degree, when in transition, or in a place that is solid yet also temporary. He has a heightened sense of reality, and he delivers it gently, so as to convince with kindness rather than with debate.
It's hard to extract a highlight, since each track offers a glimpse of something larger that's unfolding. Played in or out of sequence brings new light to the strength of the 'stand alone' value of each moment.
"Goldfish" is a strummed little ditty. Fluids slosh all over the place — caffiene, rain, whisky — and the refrain is a response to the 'gasping for air' as life's pressures accumulate and weigh heavy on Sottnick, and us all. He addresses the listener personally — you feel this too, right?
"From Photographs" features a duet with Alex Viola who has a voice that echos Kath Bloom, and the kind of protest singers from the 1960's that you'd submit floral garlands for. This sounds like a one-take piece of magic — it's uncontrived and quite disarming.
"The Batavia Sessions" isn't a party release, it's not even an after-party release. This is a little EP that will quietly wait for a rainy Sunday, or a late night headphone session when your friends are distant, dreams unobtainable, and comfort is hard to find.
In short, Paul Sottnik should be monitored — he should be hitting big stages soon.
Click here for the free download
—The ARTISTdirect Staff