Based out of the San Leandro, California area, Davie Simmons’ track “Halcyon Days” is one of those rare musical confections taking its cues from classical and literary influences as much as musical. The song title references Greek mythology but yet there is none of the heavy handed pretension present in the song one might hear from less tasteful and refined performers. This is, in part, a reflection of the songwriting seasoning behind much of Simmons’ work resulting from many decades honing and perfecting his craft, but it likewise testifies to the unique and unfettered vision he brings to the work. It is a more than worthy successor to his single “Angel Music Lover” though it has a very different slant than the aforementioned track. Even a single listen to this track will convince you no one is writing and performing work quite like what we hear from Davie Simmons.
The vocal twists and turns running through the course of “Halcyon Days” and, for newcomers to Simmons’ music, his style of delivery will take some getting used to. It is very serious in tone, milking every bit of drama he can from the lyrical content, but he imbues the poetic lyrics with a sense of stakes you don’t often hear in singer/songwriter or pop music. The songwriting is likely part and parcel of the same trove from which Simmons and his collaborators drew the earlier “Angel Music Lover”, but Simmons’ voice engages the words as if they were written just days before rather than decades. He switches up the style of his delivery throughout the course of the track and the effect further underlines the song’s dramatic qualities.
The guitar playing is effective and biting without overshadowing the vocal, other instrumental elements, or songwriting. It alternates between brief melodic leads and strong strummed support – it has numerous highlights, but the song ushers us in a compelling way being paired with Simmons’ voice. The drumming, once it kicks in, has a steadiness that helps give the song shape and direction without ever overwhelming the track. Everything is woven in such a way the musical elements fall into perfect accord – one factor feeds into another and the center of the song, Simmons’ vocal and lyrical contributions, is well complemented all around.
Those lyrical contributions are sharp and contrast well with the song’s instrumental inclinations. The musical character of the track is retro, a throwback to the late 1960’s in some respects, and straight forward while the vocals and lyrics have the aforementioned dramatic qualities one might associate with musical theater rather than anything you’d hear on the radio. Davie Simmons and his musical partners succeed in creating something that’s out of time, but identifiable nonetheless.
It’s a natural successor to his previous single “Angel Music Lover”. It is, perhaps, less suggestively personal and autobiographical, but the two songs share a common musical DNA and anyone familiar with Simmons’ work will recognize the similar strands. They are likely to be heard in everything Simmons does. Rarely does any artist, any age or level of experience, possess such clarity of musical and artistic vision.
The music of DAVIE SIMMONS has been heard all over the world due to the radio plugging services offered by Musik and Film Records. Learn more – https://musikandfilm.com
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