Album of the Day: 23rd May

By Samuel Lakin

23 May 2024

Our Album of the Day for the 23 May is Ten Time Pieces by the criminally underrated and melodically gifted TJ Dring.

A solo musician who composes, records, and produces entirely solo in his spare room, Dring claims to draw inspiration from all-time greats such as The Beatles, Bon Iver, and Elliott Smith. His inspirations shine through in his warm, bright music. The entire album, which opens with the dreamy “Taking My Time” would paradoxically feel right at home when basking on a Summer’s day, but also serve as an excellent comfort on days when it may feel as though the sun will never shine again.

We even found elements of artists such as Carole King, Kate Bush, and Djo evoked when listening to Dring’s classy, rich, and nostalgic compositions – any fan of these artists, or indeed any music enjoyer, would be doing themselves a disservice to not give “Ten Time Pieces” a listen.

Dring shows us something hopeful amongst the melancholic, something beautiful amongst the longing, and some comfort as the years pass by. Ever the experimentalist, Dring’s love for music is evident through the use of unconventional instruments throughout his album and discography as a whole.

It was legitimately difficult for us to pick just one song from the as our favourite – every track is unique and Dring’s versatility as a musician is on full display – but we landed on “Is Anybody There?”. Every talent of Dring’s is showcased here: both powerful, ballad-style and soft, enchanting vocals; an uplifting, carrying rhythm guitar; and masterful depth in the layering of his composition. 

With a sleek runtime of just over 35 minutes, you’d have to look for an excuse to justify not giving “Ten Time Pieces” a shot. By all accounts, you should, and may just discover a new favourite artist in the process.

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