Band: John Hickman
CD Title: Remnants
Label: Independent Release (2017)
Rating: Kind of like Supertramp meets Christopher Cross
Remnants is the first album release for Hawaii based singer-songwriter John Hickman. Itís the musical outgrowth of eight years of music being a passionate hobby. Now the fully retired aerospace engineer has the opportunity to turn his hobby into fulfillment. So this first time effort is made up of twelve more or less mainstream compositions that come to a full sixty-eight minutes of music that is kind of a cross between Supertramp and Christopher Cross. I pick those two sonic reference points because like Cross, Hickman can write and sing a catchy pop styled middle-of-the-road melodic tune but he can also add a little punch into his music that offers up a touch more drama and scale such as a band like Supertramp from , say, Breakfast in America era. Interestingly a few of the songs are on the longer side, six or even nine-minutes which tells me that Hickman isnít just concerned with time, he writes to suit the tune. I appreciated that because even though these compositions arenít in any way complicated there are moments which feature some nice transitions and subtle musical change-ups. More than a few times the music builds to pleasant dramatic transitions that might feature guitar solos or different vocal arrangements. So just to be clear, Hickman is not what I would call someone driven to craft complex progressive rock but if you enjoy the music of Supertramp or more mainstream eighties era Barclay James Harvest, you know that more melodic side of music with some proggy embellishments here and there, this would be a good fit for you. As always Iíd be interested to see what he might come up with if he were to actually commit to writing more complex material. Perhaps thatís next time?