When I heard that Radical Face had a new EP, not gonna lie, I got pretty excited. It had been a while since I had heard from him, so to get my hands on some new songs was like talking to an old friend. Radical Face, aka Ben Cooper, is a one person band from Florida and has been around since 2007. He has recorded 3 full length albums but only released 2: Ghost and The Family Tree: The Roots. Ghost was a concept album which had a haunting, simple complexity similar to that of Kimya Dawson, or The Mountain Goats but different. The way the simple yet prominent instrumentals are put with vocals that seem to have been recorded from across the room create feelings of nostalgia rather than pure simplicity. An echo of simplicity if you will. Great music for introspection, or studying for finals in case you forgot they are this week.
The Always Gold EP is the first new music since The Roots and it features three versions of an already released song, “Always Gold”, as well as some new ones. My favorite version of “Always Gold” has to be the first one on the album. It cuts out the humming in the intro of the album version which I didn’t think added much, and it keeps the steady clapping that was absent in the acoustic version. The clapping may not seem like a huge but it keeps the energy up and really emphasizes the minimal aspects when it drops. “Echos” is a beautiful song. You can hear the emotion in Coopers voice and it really sells the song for me. “We’re On Our Way” is the upbeat song of the EP. If you listened to Ghost it is somewhat like the track “Winter is Coming” but with bit more of a folk style. All in all I found it to be a very strong EP. I will definitely be looking forward to Radical Faces’ next full length album.