Jon White fronts a one-man band called If This Is a Man. His digital album, Random Acts of Kindness Have Saved Lives, is now available on bandcamp.
White creates his songs in his makeshift bedroom recording studio, with “…Just me, a pretty battered electric guitar, an acoustic, a bass, piano and an incredibly noisy and slow computer.” The mellow, complex layering of the tracks are somewhat reminiscent of an Imogen Heap, Pretty Lights and Bon Iver mashup.
At the age of seven or eight, White was captivated by an album called Morning Glory. At the age of thirteen, the budding musician picked up a guitar and found piano a logical accompaniment. White also muddled with drums, but says he never was quite so good with them.
The spacey, indie tunes are described by White as “a mix of genres really, slowcore, psychedelic, acoustic folk, electronica, melancholy, indie, 90’s jangley emo with slightly spacey vocals and lyrics.” A prime example of the crossover genre is ‘Your Old Room.’ The single opens with a simple piano, soon accompanied by a raw, quieter set of vocals. The piano intensifies deeper into the track, but slows to a set of beats near the middle, showing the complexity and layers of the album.
The lyricism of the unique tracks come from life experience, “I just write about ideas I have and feelings about relationships with people and concepts, they can be a bit philosophical sometimes and a bit romantic sometimes, sad sometimes, hopeful sometimes, it’s not all sort of focused with one aim. I never sort of sit down and go right, I’m gonna write a song about love, or feeling lost or whatever I just write what comes naturally,” says White.
Overall, the tracks off Random Acts of Kindness Have Saved Lives are undoubtedly original. If This Is a Man offers an alternative soundtrack to your evening, a good record to wind down to.