Album Review: Saint Pacific – Blue

Saint Pacific is a the project of Los Angeles, USA-based recording artist Nate Smith. He’s featured before on this blog, at the beginning of August with his track Carl Jung. Now he’s back thanks to revealing new album Blue.

By Graeme Smith

Blue is a very personal album for Nate, described as “the opportunity to peer through the window into his soul”. With twenty years of song writing experience under his belt, he certainly has a way with words. Alongside his originals, the album also includes covers of Bob Dylan, PJ Harvey and others.

The album opens with Maybe This Time, a vibrant bluesy introduction to the world of Saint Pacific. There’s a touch of The Hold Steady in its combination of almost-spoken vocals and dirty, ecclesiastical instrumentals but Saint Pacific is certainly bringing something new to the great American songbook. It’s a strong start.

Down By The Water is a simmering classic blues rock take on PJ Harvey’s track while Found is beautifully atmospheric. It opens stripped-back and inviting before growing into an all-enveloping wonder. Title track Blue is wistful and dreamy. Shimmering is powerfully heart-rendering. Carl Jung sits at the heart of the album providing a melancholic, storytelling highlight.

Old Man canters along with a honky-tonk swagger and had some visceral lyrics. Ten Feet Tall is slow, immersive and revelatory. Let The Rain Fall Down is pleadingly romantic, providing our final original and an emotional climax. Last Kind Word Blues is Nate’s unexpected take on the 1930s blues classic by Geeshie Wiley and Elvie Thomas. The album then closes with a gritty, experimental version of Bob Dylan’s Make You Feel My Love.

If you love classic blues rock then Blue is a must listen for you. Saint Pacific has borrowed from the best in both the covers and his original material in this album, creating something that feels modern yet timeless. His song writing chops are plain to see and his performance is second to none.

You can check out Blue below.