Born in the UK, country singer Emma Reeves is no stranger to the American rural landscape: “”riding horses and milking cows in rural England, I definitely had a slightly different brand to traditional US ‘country’ growing up, but my heart was still the same; all I ever wanted was to live on a ranch and sit on the porch with a guitar.” She is now living in Los Angeles, California, establishing herself as a neo-country singer/songwriter.
While some may discredit the entire genre, especially after the takeover of pop-country, this artist feels strongly about the songs she writes: “it’s the only tangible way to fully express the depth that are my feelings. The stories I can tell in a song are the best way to truly emphasize an emotion… with a great melody and meaningful lyrics, what more do you need?” We’re already convinced.
“Sleepwalking” will be her second single, telling a personal story of how the pain of one heartbreak does not have to last forever. Reeves digs deep and brings out her vulnerability on this latest offering: “when you’ve had your heart broken so badly, sometimes all you want to do is avoid it at all costs, and starting anything new is the last thing you want to do. But this song tells my story; I was ‘asleep’ and hiding from love, but suddenly somehow I was woken up by someone new.”
The singer has delivered a great post-breakup tune here, reassuring her listeners that there is light after the darkness. The track is nicely produced, with some classic, warm guitar tones, ghostly Wurlitzer, a solid backing rhythm section, and beautiful vocal harmonies, all signatures of the style. Emma is obviously a fan of Taylor Swift, and that’s just from a quick peruse of her YouTube channel, where she has upped a couple of covers picked out of the American singer’s songbook. At the same time, she sounds like someone who may well have grown up listening to Ryan Adams and Wilco, judging by the Americana-style songwriting/arranging on this track.
“Sleepwalking” bounces along at a nice slow-mid tempo, with plenty of time for the rich instrumentation to flourish and fill our ears. Emma’s in no rush here; she sounds mature, like she’s had her fair share of scraps with love. Thankfully, she’s come out the other end realizing that hiding isn’t going to cure what ails her. We’re happy for that, but it’s always a toss-up; would we have gotten such a melancholic, gorgeous tune if it wasn’t for the obvious heartache she had to endure?
Keep your ears perked for this one.
Listen to ‘Sleepwalking’ here.