Gloucestershire emo-punks Elessar have taken their most recent five-track EP In All Honesty and reworked each of the tracks into an acoustic release, taking a step in a very different direction.
Beginning with Half Love, we have a track that on listen to the original, would be hard to imagine as an acoustic but it has been completely reworked and the harmonies fit well. Stay sounds completely different to it’s original version but is actually the stand-out on the EP. The melodic vocals, complete with harmonic “oohs” and very minimal instrumentation make the lyrics stand out as frontman Ricky Powell truly wears his heart on his sleeve. In all honesty (pun fully intended), In All Honesty isn’t much different to it’s original, not that this is a bad thing as it shows the songwriting capabilities of Elessar in the fact that they are versatile.
Careless is a stripped back emotional ballad and Saudade was 100% made as an acoustic track, sounding even better than the version that appeared on Is This All We Are earlier this year. If Elessar fans thought the original was emotional (I’ll gladly hold my hands up to that), then hearing this version will need to come with a tissue warning! There is an interesting take on the riff around 2:30 too.
With the style Elessar normally focus on, an acoustic is going to be an interesting risk, particularly when the acoustic is just a complete rehaul of an already loved EP, but all doubts are completely removed as soon as you get halfway through Half Love as that is the only one that personally took a little bit of adjusting to as it was not something I could have imagined previously. It was a calculated risk to release an acoustic, but one that is sure to be worth taking as it showcases a different side of the band and emphasises the vocal abilities and all round musicianship of each individual member. The EP also shows that what we have previously heard from the band is not all that Elessar are!