Dramatic, almost theatrical and yet musically broad with a tremendous production – this is Diamonds, the debut full-length album from Johnnyswim, a husband-and-wife duo. The vocals of Amanda Sudano-Ramirez range from warm to world-weary to impassioned; Abner Ramirez’ self-production is as clean and crisp as the music contained within the packaging (which is lovely and well-laid out).
Of the twelve tracks that make up Diamonds, “A Miliion Years” has a militant stride about it, but is melodic and catchy with water-tight harmonies; “Closer” is on the angst-filled side, lyrically, but the emotions come across in the vocals; “Live While We’re Young” has a warmth and one of the most-embracing acoustic guitars enveloping the body of the melody. The lyrical themes touch on some darkness – heartache, loss, reconciliation – and lend greater credence to the careful construction of the music itself.
All in all, a very serious and mature album from this duo, who I am sure, we’ll be hearing a lot more of.