One man, one voice and one instrument [guitar or piano]: this is all Dubbo musician Clinton Hoy decided to implement on his latest release, and the result, the five-track EP Bones, Vol. II, is all the more better for it.
Bones, Vol II follows Hoy's 2016 EP, Bones, and like its predecessor, represents the 'bare bones' of Hoy's songwriting, free of any grandiose arrangements or multi-layered production.
To put yourself in the right mindset to enjoy Bones, Vol. II, think back to some of the great 'bare bones' releases in music history, such as Bruce Springsteen's Nebraska, Neil Young's Harvest or any of the iconic MTV Unplugged sets [Nirvana, Eric Clapton, Pearl Jam, Alice In Chains etc.]
Like all those fantastic aforementioned releases, Bones, Vol. II highlights Hoy's exemplary skill as a songwriter, including topics such as fatherhood, life, writer's block and interstellar observations.
'Little Kicks'is pretty self-explanatory. It expresses Hoy's joy at feeling the kicks of his unborn son in utero, expressing both the excitement and fears of a man physically and mentally preparing himself to become a father ["I don't think I'm ready for this, better get ready for little kicks"].
'It Never Rains When You Need It' is a deep, emotive piano ballad sees Hoy urgently crying out for a change in fortune after a period of 'creative drought', but it could also be perceived as a sign of solidarity with people who always do it tough during periods of below-average rainfall.
Hoy returns to guitar on 'What We Built For You'; a noted return to the concept of fatherhood and how parents play a big part in their children's destiny.
'Pieces of Different Puzzles' is a stripped-back version of the title track from his 2019 debut album, removing the drums, bass and guitar from the original release to capture Hoy intimately trying to make sense of the complexities of life and its many curveballs.
Closing the record, 'Full Moon Blanket' takes a dense, atmospheric direction, where Hoy gently applies vocoder effects to his voice to reflect on an evening trying to locate the Jupiter/Saturn conjunction taking place: think if Kraftwerk had ever written a dreamy guitar ballad.
Born and raised in Dubbo, Hoy has been a fixture of the city's music scene for the past decade, after spending the decade previously navigating the pros and cons of the music industry in Sydney and London.
As a member of Songwriters and Original Musicians Association Dubbo [SOMAD], Hoy continues to help foster local talent in 'Dub-vegas', and the exemplary musicianship on Bones, Vol. II only highlights Hoy's unwavering passion for the craft.
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