A modern day Elvis is a fair assessment of the singer/songwriter tender style of New Zealander Marlon Williams. Recently, Marlon released his second full-length studio album Make Way For Love, which showcases his brilliance in song structure and talent for melody.
The album begins with the mellow, slow building Come To Me which sounds like a mix of The Beach Boys and Elvis Presley. Almost as if Brian Wilson wrote the song for Elvis, Marlon carries out the beauty in it with many lively and exciting studio effects. Track two on the album, What’s Chasing You, is the kind of indie-folk song that gains immediate attention with it’s pop optimism and feel good vibes. The song has gained a lot of play on NYC’s hit radio station WFUV.
Beautiful Dress displays Marlon’s electric guitar skills. The memorable hook is what makes the song even more exciting as it will have listeners wanting to repeat the song a few times before continuing through the rest of the album. Track four, Party Boy, conveys the exact mood that it’s title suggests. With a driving drumbeat this song has listeners dancing along wherever they are listening as if they are at Marlon’s live concert. The next song, Can I Call You, begins with a mysterious, slow going beat but then the song picks up as the drums kick in and more instruments add some energy.
Love Is A Terrible Thing begins with a somber piano progression and remains a low energy song as evidenced by its name. Although the song is not the most upbeat, it still grabs the audience with its beautiful structure and music. The mood picks up a bit on the next song I Know A Jeweller. The highlight of this track is the driving drumbeat, which pushes the song along with witty, memorable vocals. Another highlight on this song are the short electric guitar solos in between verses. Track eight, I Didn’t Make A Plan, shifts back into the low energy mode, which does begin to relax listeners a bit too much into borderline sleep mode. Marlon’s Elvis influence is especially apparent on this track.
The Fire Of Love is another signature song on the theme of this album because it captures all of the different moods and energy levels on the album. This is a songwriting skill that is hard to achieve and Marlon makes it sound pretty easy on this track. Penultimate song Nobody Gets What They Want Anymore features beautiful harmonies and full band sounds that bring to mind The Beach Boys classic pop rock style. The ending, title-track of the album continues to convey the beachy, surfer vibe as well as showcases his Elvis influence.
Although there is a lot of mention of Marlon’s influences and the similarity of their sound and his, Marlon Williams has proved to be one of the finest and unique singer/songwriters today.
Scott J. Herman