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Thomas Abban – A Sheik’s Legacy

November 13, 2018

Sometimes, it is easy to miss what is going on in your own backyard. My Chicago-based son turned me on to this wunderkind living under my nose. If I read the local press here in Minneapolis I would have been aware of this guy. Voted most likely to succeed by the local entertainment weekly and cover boy of a local monthly glossy.

The album was originally released a little over a year ago on a local (Minnesota) label Deck Night and more recently re-released on RCA.

Abban has an original approach to classic rock.  Some reference points: Nick Drake, Jack White/White Stripes, Nirvana, Bowie and “Going To California” Led Zeppelin.  He reminds me a lot of Harry Styles, but he is more impressive, in that he does not have the industry behind him. This album was created independent of the star making machine.

The album is all over the map stylistically, yet cohesive. It has hard rock moments and jangling folk moments – sometimes in the same song. If you find Greta Van Fleet a guilty pleasure, Abban has the same Zeppelin vibe but with more originality.

Here is an awesome quote from Abban that pretty much defines my own musical taste:

“I’m not so into movements or genres; it’s more the people,” he says. “It’s hard to say I’m a fan of a genre when it includes people I do and don’t react to.”

I am always blown away by debut albums where the artist comes out of the gates fully realized, Thomas Abban has a vision. Abban wrote the lyrics, the music and played most of the instruments.  It is arranged and produced by Abban and Dark Pony/Deck Night. Deck Night is a fully functioning production company and record label in the Twin Cities. It was founded by producer and songwriter, Jon Herchert (AKA Dark Pony). Per the Deck Night website: Herchert “helps artist tell their stories and share those stories with the world.” Well, mission accomplished.

This is an outstanding and impressive debut album. The most striking aspect of the album is Abban’s ethereal voice. Mostly, he sings in an angelic falsetto, but he also has a gritty rock voice when he needs it. I really like the elaborate arrangements, they almost have a prog rock feel to them.

I looking forward to seeing what he is going to do next and to see what he will do live.


From → Music Reviews

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  1. Best of 2018 | Axl's Catch Groove

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