In his day job, Vincent Sonder – the alter-ego of celebrated filmmaker Joe Connor – has worked with bands as diverse as The Rolling Stones, Sam Smith, Coldplay, Paul Weller, The Maccabees, and Placebo (among others), and that shoulder-rubbing pedigree has obviously stood him in good stead when it comes to his own creative flow. Recorded in 2017 but only now available across streaming services, ‘Vincent Sonder’ the album is a gorgeous, glorious affair, and ‘Camel Lights’ is a perfect introduction.
Beautiful, exquisite piano accompanies Sonder’s mellow storytelling vocal, the lyrical flow creating a perfect mood of contemplation and reverie, dreamlike and meditative, with a narrative feel that tells the story of ‘the memory of a man that I can’t find’. It’s bewitching, evocative, and anecdotal, made all the more memorable by the interplay with the second, female vocal intertwined between Sonder’s lead and those plaintive minor piano chords; you listen, and you can practically see cigarette smoke drifting from a discarded ashtray, monochrome, in the rain. It’s beautiful.
Review by Alex Holmes