Nick Santino is a great storyteller. It was obvious when he was in A Rocket To The Moon, and even more so on his debut solo album, Big Skies. As his third EP since becoming a solo artist, Savannah shows further development of an already exceptionally talented artist.
With a heart wrenchingly beautiful narrative, “Rio” starts the EP off with character and personality. The love song, set to a sweet instrumental, is real in a way that many artists seem to be missing the mark with recently. There are no false pretenses to the track, no armor to break down, or cryptic messages; if I could describe the phrase “heart on your sleeve,” this song may be the personification.
There is a raw, acoustic-session feel to the EP. Each track displays a realness; a humanity that cannot be replicated easily. From “Madeline” to “That Old Corolla,” there is a lightness delivered, despite the heavy underlying themes (love, growing up, lost love, et cetera). With a poignant sense of emotion, Santino strips away any fillers, getting to the point, saying what he means, and telling a story in a way that is both enchanting and grounding.
“I Just Wanted You To Know” is a stand-out track, with a vulnerable, melancholic, “I’ve been thinking about you, and I miss you like crazy, and I need you right now,” desperation. It’s refreshingly soft, driven more by pure emotion than a lust-filled brain.
Lyrically, Savannah is strikingly fascinating and poetic, but “How To Live With a Ghost” may take the cake. Depending on your perspective, the ghost could be anyone or anything, but the struggle to move past it is constant. The more I listen to it, the more I imagine a broken hearted man haunted by the love he has lost. The lyrics themselves are hauntingly beautiful (for lack of a better, less cliched phrase), and will enchant listeners. The title track of the EP is just as still; there is a peace to the melancholy tone that paints every line. It’s the perfect end to a very well executed piece of art.
The artistry displayed on Savannah does not surprise me; it was expected. What did come as a surprise was the unique quality of each track. Usually, stripped down EPs/albums have a constant, if not repetitive sound, but Nick Santino has figured out a way of giving each song a character all their own. It adds a cinematic value to the EP, as though this could be the soundtrack to a brilliant indie film that everyone raves about for years. Another perfect group of songs to finish off the year with.
Savannah will release worldwide right before the holidays on Friday, December 19th. For more information, please click HERE.