Once you succeed in a certain genre, the next logical step is taking things to the next level. How many times have we seen an artist do the same thing over and over but end up burning out from overuse of their own formula? The type of artist is common in our day and age and the ones that survive are the ones that are able to evolve and create their own unique formula which encourages evolution. Clint Nolan is one of those artists. The intelligence and competence shown by Nolan on the “Pearls Before Swine” EP, will be enough to reel people in and bring forth a new breed of fan – the thinking kind!
Clint Nolan has done something remarkable here. He has maintained a mainstream sound while putting out excellent music and keeping his edge. Nolan has an uncanny ability to please fans over and over with thick and dark, driving tunes that practically leave you holding your breath for more.
When you listen to any one of Nolan’s recordings you get what you paid for and he brings it on tenfold. This newest accomplishment comes with all the punch that we have come to expect from him. I have always marveled at how much sound Nolan produces! The music seems to be layer upon layer of finely crafted rock.
The feel and lyrics of each track is beautiful, powerful, deep and really grows on you each time you listen. If someone asked me what my favorite track on this EP is, I’d say it’s definitely the epic title track, “Pearls Before Swine”, though I was also positively surprised by Nolan’s rendition of Kansas’ “Dust In The Wind”, which may seem like simple melodic-rock, but it’s a very difficult song to sing if you’re short on range. Nolan’s version is deliciously arranged, superbly executed and surprisingly very well-sung indeed.
Another unexpectedly awesome treat is how heavy and viscerally satisfying “Devices No More” is, while “Fade” is ripe with one catchy, gut-punching riff after another, accentuated by an impenetrably thick guitar tone and ripping solo provided by Chris Picha who collaborated with Clint on this EP. Often Nolan trades off between deceptively simple verses and harmonic, beautifully-sung choruses; and does so to excellent effect.
There is so much power, tone, melody, harmony and brilliance stuffed into the “Pearls Before Swine” EP, as Clint Nolan digs deep and challenges himself to produce as technically well as he possibly can. Trying to out-do oneself is always a very admirable task, and in this case, it is an equally rewarding one too, because the resulting work is easily Nolan’s meatiest, most interesting and absolute best to date!