I can't remember the last time I put any new record on repeat in the way I have been doing with Marlon Williams' new record Make Way for Love since I received a preview copy a few days ago.
My introduction to Marlon began in Christchurch when he was the support act for Justin Townes Earle, and it's been a real pleasure following his journey. His 2015 self-titled new album has had a high level of play at my place, and I have been hanging out for this new record.
While Marlon has been relentlessly touring, it's interesting to note that the new album only really came together after his split with fellow Kiwi singer-songwriter Aldous Harding. In the past Marlon Williams has told stories in his songs, but not in a personal way.
That approach was ditched after their break-up in early December 2016, and Make Way for Love is a completely original line-up of songs that came flooding into his consciousness. Where he hadn't written any new material for two years, suddenly he had 15 new songs on the go within a month.
Relationships from the many perspectives have been explored, including heartache, conflicting emotions, future expectations and regret. All of them delivered by THAT voice, save for a duet with his ex, in Nobody Gets What They Want Any More.
The country influence that was earlier evident is almost non-existent, so we're treated to snapshots and settings that make the most of his emotional storylines, delivered with passion and sensitivity.
With an imminent tour, the release of Make Way for Love is perfectly timed, and is another big leap forward for the most beguiling of New Zealand's vocal talents.