Olivia Corish – Share The Joy – EP Review
Full disclosure, I’ve been fortunate enough to briefly chat with Olivia behind the scenes. While readers of these pages know that never taints my objectivity, I can’t help but point out that she’s just about one of the most pleasant, polite, and thoughtful people I’ve encountered from this side of the screen. A truly beautiful soul with a gorgeous voice, I couldn’t help but admire how well Olivia communicated sincerity through a few messages and could only imagine how well she’d do when it came to her music.
A proudly faith-based artist, singer, songwriter, and all-around multi-talent, it’s more than clear than Olivia Corish really is all about finding a way to Share The Joy with the world – and I fully respect that. As I’ve said often at these pages over the past couple years, it’s a genre with plenty of room to grow, and there’s every reason I can think of to listen to music from every section of your record store. In fact, I’d go as far as to say, it’s music like Olivia’s that go a real long way to proving why that’s a great thing to do – whether you’re a believer or not, you’d be surprised what the right talents combined can create. The quaint, welcoming, and beautiful songs & melodies that you’ll find throughout Share The Joy are songs that so many people out there could enjoy and seek for genuine comfort & a little peace of mind.
As far as my ears are concerned, she’s got every reason to believe. I mean that lyrically for sure – it’s clear that she’s confident about her faith & religion, ready to sing the good word to us all, and I like that she’s also found a way to make these lyrics connect through a variety of sounds, styles, and different approaches to her own Indie-Folk vibes. Like, listen to how Olivia sings the opening song “He’s Got A Plan For Me” – she’s got a completely charming & sweet voice without question, but also remarkably sincerity & conviction in her words. If there’s one consistently solid reason to ever listen to a singer in any solo project or band out there, it’s that when they believe in the words they’re singing, you’ll always feel them connect in a whole different way. Know what I mean? It’s more than just writing a song when you truly live the lyrics – you can hear from the gentle sweetness and spark of authentic enthusiasm that runs through “He’s Got A Plan For Me” that Olivia is right in her element here…that a song like this is a genuine reflection of who she really is on the inside. And it’s beautiful! I think Olivia’s done an exceptional job on her lyrics, I think the melody itself is exquisite, and I think it’s completely due to the shining performance she puts into the microphone with such personality that brings this banjo-led tune to a complete victory. I’m a big fan of melodic tunes…I love great, lively instrumentation, and of course I dig a singer that can find beautiful tones to match the energy and vibe – and there’s simply every one of these attributes on display throughout “He’s Got A Plan For Me” – what’s not to love here? “He’s Got A Plan For Me” – Olivia’s probably right about that, I’m not here to dispute that…but if I can toss my own two cents in here…my friend Olivia, I think that plan He has for you, might just be a music career.
I think Zeke Cameron did a fantastic job on “God Is Good” – this is a real highlight right here in the middle…excellent harmonies, and ultimately, just excellent songwriting that connects through the sincerity & emotion in the performance. When you listen to how well the vocals work and bring out the sweetness that exists in the potential of this song…it’s definitely noteworthy…Zeke’s got a truly humble sound that suits “God Is Good” perfectly. I’m assuming it’s Olivia’s collaborative spirit that has invited in these guest stars onto her record, and I think it speaks a lot of her confidence as a songwriter to be able to step back and allow other voices out there to sing her songs when she’s so clearly capable herself. For the first minute, I felt like I was listening to a really good song…and I’m not even sure that I can put my finger on it, or if I know why I feel this way exactly, but every single time I listened to “God Is Good” and Zeke started the second verse, I continually felt like that was the real moment where this whole song clicked into an entirely new gear and really found its main strengths from there. Certainly nothing wrong with that, songs are meant to expand…but my point is that, Zeke’s performance at the beginning has that same humble & honest sound that it will at the end…it’s just the tiniest spark that seems to send that second verse into its purest melody & sweetest sentiment, in my opinion. In any event, what it definitely is, is a memorable moment and a real defining part of this song that makes a strong impact – this much I know to be true. Quite happy to take this entire tune just the way it is though, don’t get me wrong – I think the writing & melody really stand out here on “God Is Good” for all the right reasons; the harmony achieved between the music & vocals and the balance of sound is perfectly serene on this song. The verse also has a lot of catchiness to it as well – it’s highly memorable; the chorus builds “God Is Good” up even further with its warm & inviting tones beckoning you to listen. And I like that, a lot, because I think a track like this could beat the odds in that respect; it’s a mellower song, but the level of captivating melody and sound you’ll find flowing through this song makes it a strong candidate as a great song to put out there & lead the listeners online around the globe into the rest of Share The Joy.
“Song Of Salvation” has a wonderful intro and smooth opening that brings gentle hand-drummed percussion, violin, and sweet acoustic sounds together…highly enticing & inviting once again. There’s a traditional worship song vibe that runs through this melody that feels like it would fit right into the faith-based realm just as timelessly as many of their great tunes. The violins add a lot of character into this tune that gives “Song Of Salvation” an excellent chance of catching the modern-day Folk-fans out there, and the sound of guest-star Simon Pavitt’s vocals also fit & factor right into that equation. Another excellent featured performer that you’ll find on this EP, Simon does the songwriting proud here. I’ll say this – I think there might be a slightly narrower audience for this particular tune, not at all due to the quality of the songwriting or the melody or the performance, just by proxy of it having a more distinctly traditional sound that defines it – but I don’t think it would be such a margin that would be concerning. Think of “Song Of Salvation” kind of closer to something along the lines of a period-piece when it comes to movies – there’s a massive amount of people out there that absolutely still love’em and an audience that exists, it might not be the mainstream, but it’s definitely a significant number of a whole lot more than a few people, know what I mean? Personally I like that it brings yet another dimension of sound to Olivia’s growing resume throughout this EP – you’ll find that all five of these tunes are connected for sure, but that each carries its own personality & style of its own. Remarkably diverse & cohesive – and somehow all at the same time…it’s in hearing something like that in a combination of sounds & styles that you know beyond the shadow of a doubt that the songwriting has something truly special to it.
“Nothing But Joy” could just as easily be a description of this entire EP – it’s a great final track for her debut EP to end on, you can feel the exuberant & celebratory vibes flow through this song. Violins are in the mix, banjo is there, and I think the accordion even gets a solo on this tune – am I right about that? Honestly, I’m not 100% sure…but I can tell ya, I love the instrumentation in this final track big-time! The solos & musicianship that occur just prior to the last runs through the unifying hooks of the chorus are stellar to listen to; everything from the drums to each layer of instrumentation on top, it’s all part of a really magical moment here on “Nothing But Joy.” There’s a couple moments where you can hear Olivia just getting in all the words she wants to sing – but face facts, she’s clearly got a LOT of joy to spread throughout the world, so there is quite a bit to get in! In the end, I think she gets there…it’s a close call in a couple spots and you can hear her hustling to stick to that metering & flow of the verse, but she catches that train no problem at all and rides the rails to victory on this last song. As far as the chorus goes, it’s another perfect example of how the genuine way that Olivia approaches her music & sings it with such radiant sincerity & enthusiasm, such commitment & pure intentions, that you can’t help but want to join in and sing along with her. No lie, I catch the spirit myself every time this song comes on – how can you not? “Nothing But Joy” is devout fun with a ton of excellent musicianship on display – love the violin on this song especially – and lyrically, it completely gets to the heart of just how much love Olivia has for her Lord & Savior, and how much happiness it brings her to be in His service and faithfully spread the word through her music to all of you listening out there.
No matter what you believe in, my advice to you fine folks out there is to open your hearts, open your minds, push play on Olivia Corish’s new EP and Share The Joy with her – everyone is welcome.
Find out more about Olivia Corish at her official websites below!
Official homepage: https://www.oliviacorishmusic.com.au
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