DEVON WILLIAMS: SUFFERER
An extension of last year’s Carefree LP, the “Sufferer” EP contains two songs—the bouncy title track and a slow-builder B-side called “Who Cares About Forever?” Williams plays a brand of pop music that is hard to categorize—his melodies are the crux of the songs, but the subtle augmented instrumentation and the soaring guitars are what sets him apart from contemporaries. The pop comparisons to Nilsson and Clifford Ward can definitely be heard in Williams’ songwriting and it excites me that Los Angeles has someone that is playing a modern twist on these kinds of tunes on a regular basis. On “Sufferer,” Williams turns up the intensity on his tremolo and plays along to a chugging drum pattern. This is my preference of the two and would have fit right in on the Carefree full length—one of my favorite LPs of 2008. The breakdown/chorus that Williams often employs is perfect to showcase the vocals and melody on this gem. “Who Cares About Forever?” contains another carefully plotted melody with sparse instrumental flourishes. The song has a timeless, familiar feel—like it could have been released in any of the last three or four decades. And actually, that’s a good way to sum up Devon himself.