Former S.C.U.M. frontman, Thomas Cohen, has turned love and sorrow into beautiful music on his solo debut, Bloom Forever.
The first half of the album in an ode to love. More specifically to his wife, Peaches Geldof, who tragically passed away two years ago. The opening track, ‘Honeymoon’, is a hazy dreamy tune. “Keep your eyes, where they hide the sun, nothing to doubt anymore” Cohen ponders upon his newfound love and the daze of a blooming romance.
The album contains a heavy 70s vibe, singer/songwriter style, yet unexpectedly upbeat. Think Pink Floyd, Neil Young, Elton John, and Lou Reed’s Berlin. It’s miles apart from what he did in S.C.U.M., yet Cohen proves that his musical capability should not be doubted. It is a more traditional record, with a solid production that is a rather rare feature in a lot of music these days.
Title track ‘Bloom forever’ recount the birth of Cohen’s second son – who’s middle name is Bloom Forever. It’s touching and emotionally honest, yet refreshingly “I wrote the lyrics in the hospital on the day he was born” Cohen comments in a press release from Stolen Recordings, the label the album is released at.
After four tracks the idyllic vibe that is clinging to the first tracks shatters. ‘Country Home’ is the song on the record that most directly deals with Peaches Geldof’s death, yet the shadow of sorrow sets a different mood for the following tracks. “My Love had gone, she turned so cold, why weren’t her eyes covered and closed?”
“I found it really impossible not to be honest on this record – I really hope that people listen to the record rather than just the story.” He says, and it shines through. The fragile honesty give the track the depth they demand. The musical effort Cohen has put in, along with the cleverly crafted tunes, save this record from being reduced into merely a tragic story.
There is a deep passion for the craft that is revealed through the tunes. Though he deal with a great deal of emotions and sentiment, Cohen elegantly avoids being soppy or cliché. It is a masterpiece of a creative outlet for emotions one might not manage to put into words. As he said; “It just shows what you really feel – what you really think.”
It is a record to get lost in, and this is both its strongest and weakest feature. The slow evolution of the tracks, the dreamy haze and Cohens dragged out vocal all created a daydream of an album. On Forever Bloom’s less demanding songs you can easily fall through the tunes and get lost as the album easily serves as a backdrop for a stream of consciousness.
Ultimately there is no doubt that Cohen has mastered his return to music brilliantly. The chronological narrative and lyrically blooming songs works perfectly along with the significantly detailed, and yet minimalistic production to create a very high quality album.