I was introduced to Patrick Lefler of Oxford Blue late last year by Nik Wever of GAIN Music. Patrick described his sound as “a mix of country, folk, and surf; think Bahamas meets The Band“, both of whom I love, so I was naturally excited to take a listen to Oxford Blue’s new album (Introducing) Oxford Blue – a clever twist on the self-titled album title. Listening to the album, I was not disappointed.
Opening up the album, Coupe DeVille shows Patrick’s unique vocals and focuses on solid songwriting and keeps you interested with engaging transitions and a catchy chorus. The second track, Bargains, slows things down and I can see where the comparison to Bahamas comes in. This track is definitely more folk than the first but keeps the same strong points of good songwriting and strong transitions through the song. I love the passion in Oxford Blue’s sounds which really comes through near the end of Bargains. As the album continues, I’m introduced to the different sounds of Oxford Blue: country with a bit of twang, good old foot-stomping songs, and melodic guitar solos all with great lyrical content and backed by solid guitar playing.
Personally, I’m always a fan of a debut album that shows the capabilities of an artist and I was happy to find just that on (Introducing) Oxford Blue. The album has ballads with a sad, sorrowful feel (Bargains, Things Were Rough, Oxford Blue, On The Road) and every once in a while we are treated to a more upbeat track which shows the versatility of Oxford Blue (Coup DeVille, Flow Like a River) and when the blend of two come together, that’s where Oxford Blue really shines (Old Beater).
You can listen to (Introducing) Oxford Blue on Bandcamp at http://oxfordblue.bandcamp.com/ and learn more on Oxford Blue’s website at http://www.iamoxfordblue.com/. Make sure to check out Patrick live at Van Gogh’s Ear this Saturday when GAIN Music hosts Let’s Just Be Friends, Patrick McCauley & the Wandering Bones, Oxford Blue & Clara Engel. With a jam packed line up, it’s definitely going to be a great show.