The debut album by singer and song-writer David Mumford, titled ‘Bonfire Music’ is, to simply put it, a beautiful album featuring some brilliantly written songs. Played mostly on acoustic guitars, and accompanied by many other instrumentals, ‘Bonfire Music’ goes from strength to strength as the various tracks each explore different ideas and themes. There’s a lot to enjoy on the album, which doesn’t fall into the trap of simply featuring acoustic guitar, which I find for some artists tends to just become a little boring. David Mumford though seems to have understood the importance of presenting music in an interesting way, and the result is an incredibly impressive album.
It’s hard to simply place ‘Bonfire Music’ into a specific musical genre, as it isn’t just an acoustic album. At times, many other instruments, such as bass guitars, electric guitars and pianos, all come into the track to help build up the bigger picture. This isn’t true for every song on the album, which sometimes focus just on Mumford’s acoustic guitar and his vocals. On ‘Bonfire Music’ though, it simply means that these moments on the album don’t become boring or drag on, as they play an important part in making up the variety and vibrancy of the album itself. The songs themselves are well written, with some impressive lyrics telling some great stories. On top of the great instrumentals though, and the lyrics, is the voice that Mumford himself has. The singer’s voice seems to form the main attraction to the music itself, which is usually always in the foreground being the main focus of each song. It works well, as Mumford is able to present his lyrics in a great way that works well with the instrumentals that have been built up for the song.
The only problem I find with this album is that it seems to get off to what could be described as a little shaky start. As the album progresses, it displays more and more strengths that easily draws the listener in, but the first few songs seems to just be that little bit weaker than the others. They still display many merits of their own, but it seems that when the middle-portion of the album plays, their strengths seem to overshadow many of the other songs on the album. The overall quality of the album isn’t ruined, as the first few songs do have a lot to offer. It just seems though that it takes just a little while for the album to really get into itself.
Overall though, ‘Bonfire Music’ is simply a lovely album that displays some brilliant song-writing. For an album that has spent so long in what I’d describe as writer’s limbo (though David Mumford might disagree there), it seems that finally, everything has come together and resulted in an album that Mumford can be proud of. ‘Bonfire Music’ is a cut above the normal albums found within this genre, and displays some great song-writing. There’s a lot to be enjoyed on the album as well, with the instrumentals being every bit as wonderful as the vocals themselves. It’s simply an impressive album, and one that David Mumford should be proud of.
- ★★★★☆ 4/5
- Wayfaring Stranger
- Singing In The Rain
- Night Without Sleep
- Bonfire Music