After what seems like the longest time ever, the insanely talented Cody ChesnuTT returns for a little cameo in our lives with his new EP, Black Skin, No Value. It’s business as usual from ChesnuTT. Opening with a 10 second intro, Cody wastes no time getting into it with ‘Do Better To The Young,’ a track that was released a few months back via his Bandcamp page. The message is self explanatory and has the artistry of latter day Marvin Gaye work.
‘The Quiet Girl Who Eats Alone’ is a familiar minute long interlude, the kind that were all over the critically acclaimed The Headphone Masterpiece (2002) and showcases the power of ChesnuTT’s bare bone writing skills; a voice, a guitar and a melody that leaves you wanting more, yet perfectly sets up the next track.
‘Everybody’s Brother’ picks up where the preceding song left off, ChesnuTT talks about his former vices and the fact that there is ‘No turning back.’ ‘Where Is All The Money Going’ is a poignant song when we look at the current economic climate. Once again, it is so reminiscent of Marvin Gaye’s work in it’s composition, particularly the choice of background vocals and ad-libs, as well the lyrical content.
The EP closes with the phenomenal ‘To Be Upon The Perch’; once again, a bare bones track, with just ChesnuTT’s voice and a Honky Tonk piano banging out chords that are so pretty and haunting, all at once.
Cody ChesnuTT – ‘To Be Upon The Perch’:
What we get from Cody ChesnuTT on this EP is his further disregard of any musical rules, no time for glossy production and a showcase of his songwriting prowess. The man is a genre all of his own and in my mind a highly underrated artist in the truest sense of the word.
Although I felt that some the songs were too short and I was left wanting more, I can’t help thinking that this is just part of his appeal, as I felt the same after listening to his first album, all those many years ago. I take great solace in the fact that this EP is, hopefully, a sign of more music to come.
Black Skin, No Value is out now [iTunes] via Vibration Vineyard.