Last year’s ‘Secret Stairs’ album from New Zealand’s Nik Brinkman was a highlight of the year – in our 9.1/10 review we said it was a stunning debut: a collection of sparkling jewels that glitter with a melancholic sheen, while featuring glorious pop vignettes delivering melody and an ethereal grace. We are very honoured to premiere Brinkman’s new ‘Unplugged’ EP which takes three tracks from the album – ‘Candy’, ‘Sugarland’ and ‘The Beach’ – and strips them down to the bare necessities.
Without the shimmering production frills and standing before us in their collective birthday suits, the songs on the EP highlight the basic truth: Brinkman is a songwriter of immense capability. Unadorned, these three tracks are exquisitely crafted gems, highlighting Brinkman’s sonorous vocals, the superglue melodies and the über cool laconic lyrics.
‘Candy’ unplugged takes a reference page from JAMC’s magnificent and underrated ‘Stoned and Dethroned’, relying purely on a single shimmering acoustic guitar and Brinkman’s arch vocals: laconic and laid back. ‘Sugarland’ unplugged has layers of nothing but atmosphere: twin guitars strum and pluck in the stratosphere creating so many sounds in the imagination: an epic sweep. ‘The Beach’ unplugged introduces haunting strings to its palette, an upbeat pace punctuated by slide guitars, all meshing together to create something bold and cinematic.
You can download ‘Secret Stairs’ through the link below or through the usual download/streaming sites here.