Scott Helman – Augusta

Scott Helman - AugustaThe next generation of singer/songwriters is in full force now following the success of artists like Ed Sheeran. Both Hozier and George Ezra are rising talents on the world stage and now Canada has someone jumping on board.

My first time hearing Scott Helman was through regular airplay on CBC Radio 2, which picked up on his song Bungalow last fall. His youth oozes through the song but not in a way that makes it juvenile.

Instead, it’s a fresh perspective that most songwriters start out with and it’s what makes Scott sound so bright. Bungalow sounds like Mumford & Sons as done by Chariot-era Gavin DeGraw. Upbeat pop but with enough of a folk tinge to keep things interesting.

His ability to write a booming chorus carries on into That Sweater, which fits slightly more in line with Jason Mraz‘s early material. Tikka is another song with a big chorus that is wrapped up in storied verses borrowing from the page of Jeremy Fisher‘s High School.

Scott’s best trait isn’t so much his voice but the effort and strength put behind it. Even on the ballad Machine, he doesn’t hold back when singing “you’re more than a machine.” It’s his strength as a singer that is ultimately what won me over.

Scott Helman is the next big thing in Canada, with Bungalow on the verge of being this year’s CanCon radio default. The one downside with this EP is the length -at only seven tracks it gives merely a glimpse into the artist before it ends. But that’s merely a technicality. As long as his inevitable full-length album, which is hopefully in the making now, follows along the same lines as these recordings, he’ll be international in no time.
Five stars

1. Bungalow
2. That Sweater
3. Cry Cry Cry
4. Machine
5. Tikka
6. Lion
7. Somewhere Sweet [Live]

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