By Mike Dunn
The balance between unpredictability and comfort is a fine line to tread. Edmonton singer-songwriter, Jim Cuming, aka Jom Comyn, struts that taut wire with ease, gently bringing the listener into the songs with low key vocals laying over gentle grooves, before pressing toward dramatic lifts and turns.
Jom Comyn’s third LP, Crawl, arrives as perhaps some of his most fleshed-out work and sees the accomplished musician pushing himself both artistically and physically.
“For the most part I just sing what feels right. All these songs mean a particular thing to me, but people are always ready to take it wherever they like.” says Cuming. “I like that people can listen to it and have it invoke something personal to them.”
On Crawl, Cuming layers a near orchestral pillow of squalling guitar and back alley percussion as a prelude to the title track, before settling into a straight-ahead groove contrasted by his signature delivery, a relaxed baritone that might feel almost aloof were it not for the care he brings to his lyrics: “I couldn’t arrange it better, dropping the rain right where it falls, and then watching from inside, so as you climb, I’ll be climbing a little slower, a speed I just discover you’ve already left behind.”
There’s an abstraction in Cuming’s words that his voice fits, and his subtlety in delivering those lines amid the churning and meandering musical movement is like Basquiat in watercolour: it takes a moment to comprehend what you see, while it’s bathed in a softer beauty.
Stream the album premiere exclusively below and catch Jom Comyn on tour across the Alberta and BC in September.
Friday, September 6 — Vernon BC @ house show
Saturday, September 7 — Kamloops, BC @ The Art We Are
Sunday, September 8 — Victoria, BC @ The Copper Owl
Monday, September 9 — Nanaimo, BC @ The Vault
Wednesday, September 11 — Vancouver, BC @ The Lido
Thursday, September 12 — Kelowna, BC @ Milkcrate Records
Friday, September 13 — Lethbridge, AB @ The Owl
Saturday, September 14 — Calgary, AB @ The Palomino SmokehouseCrawl, Edmonton, Jom Comyn