In March,Stuart Eccles-Skinner,Paul Steven Wood, Sebastian Doughty,and Jean-Paul Dehavilland released ‘Parallels’ their latest electro acoustic 11 track album.With echoes of The Editors and Seasick Steve,the album has a warm, relaxed vibe. Track after track, Skinner’s voice melds into a haunting and often poignant musical resonance that is particularly apparent in songs such as ‘Oceans’ and ‘Firefly’.The sheer delicacy of the effects, especially the magical sparkles of guitar sound tracing the firefly’s path, are the perfect match for the lyrics in both of these songs.’Drowning Time’ has a haunting quality, and ‘Come to Nothing’ and ‘Paralysed’ are pacier showing the range of Skinner’s voice. Once heard, these are songs that linger in the consciousness probably because Skinner has found a way of neatly encapsulating experiences we can all relate to- the parallels that exist in all relationships. lpproject
Channeling sounds from rock authorities such as Queens Of The Stone Age and Foo Fighters, Stu E Skinner dishes up a special slice of rock-infused acoustica.
‘Drowning Time’ opens the album with a prominent acoustic guitar and classic rock drums driving the track along. As previously mentioned, Stu E Skinner’s voice doesn’t sound unlike Dave Grohl, but he has his own unique sound that sets him apart and allows his music to stand up on its own terms. The acoustic guitar that runs throughout flecks the track with americana, creating a rich sound.
‘The Way Of Things’ has a distant, thoughtful quality to it, and at points reminds me of music by the somewhat obscure Additional Moog, who were in turn influenced by Pavement and their alt.folk loving guitarist, Spiral Stairs (otherwise known as Scott Kannenberg). The squealing wah-wah guitar adds bite and crunch to the track, always welcome on this style of music.
Things pull back a little on ‘Oceans’, a chorus-laden acoustic track. The effects themselves create a watery feel, and the organ in the background adds an ebb and flow to the music as things continue to build, with a gritty, grumbling bass that sounds like it’s going to fall apart at any moment – a beautiful moment.
Getting slightly hotter, ‘Paralysed’ kicks in with a shuffling drum section, while Skinner’s vocals take a few risks that pay off, in the shape of some falsetto jumps here and there. It’s on the more upbeat songs on Parallels that things get exciting – ‘Summer’s Song’ could almost be a few BPM too fast for its own good, but it really, really works, like when you’re riding a bike down a hill and not sure if you’re going to be able to keep it together for the whole way.
Closing with ‘Firefly’, Parallels is a special collection on acoustically driven rock & roll. The final track is soft and tender, glowing like a candle wick in its dying moments with delicate clarity it is recording, the guitar work is captivating and a touching ending to an engaging collection of songs.
Chris - Crossradar.com
"Local Music Hero"
Neil Jones - The Evening Gazette
"Performance and Songwriting of a really high calibre" Stephen Fearing - Multiple Juno Award winner.
"When Stuart sings he pick you up and takes you on a journey" Louise Sofield - Jazz Singer/The Shout.
Stu E Skinner ‘Once’
The review of Stu E Skinner and his band’s live performance already appears on the site. Recently,he asked me if I would review his new CD ‘Once.’ There are 13 tracks including alternative versions of a song and a couple of instrumentals where Stu has produced all the words,imagery and music.He has taken a common motif of troubled relationships and crafted it into something beautiful while confronting head on, the messier aspects of a painful relationship.There are no happy endings, just an analysis of regret,betrayal and a realisation of a self that needs saving.
This is an album of real craftsmanship and flair.Acoustic wizardry, deceptively gentle harmonies that only emphasise the bewilderment and sense of heartbreak in the lyrics,creates an experience that is complex and yet accessible to everyone.The instrumentals ‘Slumber’ and ‘For Want of a Better Name ‘ add richness and depth to the album.On some songs like ‘Once’ and ‘Life on Rent,’ the vocals slide away at critical points and there are problems moving between registers.In others such as ‘The Only One,” Stu’s perfectly nuanced delivery draws the listener in and when the song is repeated with a piano accompaniment becomes even more spare and bleak – a haunting conclusion to the album. The whole shimmers with emotion but never becomes maudlin and as lyrics and images impress themselves into your mind leaves the listener realising that this is an album that is impossible to listen to just once.
“Opening up with an almost Karma Coma ethnic drumming rhythm the track falls into an acoustic folk guitar. Straight away you have to love the way they have blended these elements to make a unique track. It feels like a relaxing calming track, but stop and pay attention to the lyrics, and it has a darker edge. The track sways in and out carrying you through verse and chorus helping you drift away. My favorite thing about the track has to be vocal harmonising on the choruses it's so warm and welcoming. It's somehow a little hypnotising. When the track finishes the silence seems unsettling. It would be a great opening track to an album setting you up perfectly to want to investigate more. Although I have only reviewed this track I was inquisitive and listened to more of the band's stuff and now have a new-found love for acoustic guitars.”
Stuart Braybrooke - The Colchester Circle
“Stu is currently finishing his studies as a student at Colchester Institute. Stu has been on the scene for some time now originally being renowned for his rock/metal playing in the local area. He has now turned his hand to a more relaxed and laid back genre of music. Playing a vast array of acoustic, alternative and folk rock music, this is an act that is not to be missed. After playing a few events of ours using a variety of different formats from solo to whole band. Each time providing a different atmosphere to enthusiasm to the event. This is why he has adopted the 'Stu E. Skinner Experience' as each performance is certain not to be the same as another? Stu has just finished his eagerly awaited album which can be purchased for a mere £5 - Bargain! To hear and see more of Stu check out these links. http://www.myspace.com/stueskinner http://www.reverbnation.com/stueskinner For quirky lyrics and brilliant musicianship Stu should be high on your must see list!”
Ice Breaker Promotions (Sunday Review)
With years of experience as a guitarist and songwriter in numerous Essex based original rock/metal outfits, Stu E Skinner is now venturing into the acoustic realm. His distinctive voice, personalised guitar style and intimately honest lyrics combine to create a unique blend of lyrically driven acoustic rock. What originally started as a solo project has now evolved into a three piece acoustic band. With the emphasis still very much on the songs, live the band produce an eclectic acoustic rock mix infused with worldly flavours ranging from Celtic, eastern, classical, folk, blues, jazz and even Hip Hop.
For The Love Of You (Video Release Today)
I am very pleased to announce that the Lockdown open mic themed video for my new release 'For The Love Of You' is out today.
For The Love Of You was written, recorded and produced by [email protected] Piggyfy Studios and it features my frequent colaborator Rosalind Harniess of guest vocals.
You can check out the video today here.
The song should be appearing for pre-order on most online outlets over the next week. Please keep your ears and eyes peeled for it and spread the word if you like it. You can preorder it here.
Hole In My Soul (Out Now)
I am very pleased to announce that my first new release in a few years is now available from: Apple Music, iTunes, Spotify, Amazon Music, YouTube, Google Play, Band Camp & Sound Cloud. Hole In My Soul was written, recorded and produced by myself with mixing, mastering and additional production handled by Tom @ Tom Donovan Studio. The accompanying artwork is the photographic work of my good friend and long term collaborator Stuart Armitage. Buy or streem it here.
Hole In My Soul (Single release)
I am very pleased to announce that my first new release in a few years will be going live on September the 7th 2018. Hole In My Soul was written, recorded and produced by myself with mixing, mastering and additional production handled by Tom @ Tom Donovan Studio. It should be appearing for pre-order in most online outlets over the next week. Please keep your ears and eyes peeled for it and spread the word if you like it. You can preorder it here.
Pink Shed - Live Session
I recently had the privilage of doing a Pink Shed Live Session. I used the opportunity to crack out a couple of new tunes 'Limbo Land' 'Sunflower' and an old favourite 'Turn Me Round (Lost and Found)' Check out the You Tube Playlist here.
New Year - New Material
New Year brings new material. First thing New Years Day I wake up with a new song in my head. forget to record it, lost it. found it again the next day. Now i'm 5 new song in. I'm looking forward to seeing how the new blend with the tunes I have already short listed for the next album.
Back In The Studio (Hole In My Soul)
I have recently been back in the studio with Tom Donovan (Mixing and masterign engineer from Parellels). We've been wirking on putting the finishing touches to a new song called 'Hole In My Soul'. In slight change a pattern I am planning to release a few singles through the year leading to a full album at the end. Thats the plan anyone.
Skinner & Cornell on Hiatus
Ellie Cornell and myself are taking a break from The Skinner & Cornell project to focus on other projects for an indefinite period. It's been an amazing experience working with Ellie pushing each other musically and creatively and we've created a protfolio of originals and cover arrangements that I am really proud of. We hope to find the time to record and release some of our originals when we have the time. Wathc this space.
New Signature Guitar
This year I had the opertunity to have a custom electric guitar made for me by the amazing talented luthier Martyn Booth. For those who don't know Martyn is a master luthier who has worked for the likes of Gibson and Yamaha and desined built guitars such as the Yamaha MSG and Martyn Taylor's Signature model. It's been a once in a life time expereince. It took approximately 5 months from start to finish: planning the project, opting for a single cuttaway style (which is rare for a Martyn Booth), picking the woods, top, back, neck, binding, Picking hardware, colours and finally the inlay decorations. The theme for the guitar is the artwork from my last album. Parallels The colour of the guitar is matched to the artwork inlay and the headstock features the Firefly from the front cover.
New YouTube Video Postings.
I have recently uploaded picture montage videos for all of the material from my two LP releases Parallels & Once. Please check them out on my You Tube page.
New Summer's Song Video Out Now.
Light and Shade Festival
We had a fantastic in not slight freezing time playing the Colchester Light and Shades Festival this Halloween.
New project with Ellie Cornell.
So I'm currently working on a new project with the very talented Ellie Cornell follow the youtube links to check out a few covers we've done.
New Live Dates Coming...
We're currently adding a few more live dates to round up the year.
Drowning Time Video
Check out the live video we did for Drowning Time last year with Get Known Be Heard.
The big day is finally upon the horizon. The album has been recorded, mixed and mastered. The artwork has been sorted and is in final stages of compilation ready to go into print tomorrow. We're all very excited here in the band camp and can't wait to get out and sharing our new sounds with you.
The audio for the new album has been in the capable hands of Tom (Mr Kuru) Donovan for over a month now and we're hoping to have it back with us in the next few days. Art work is in the motions so it's all go.
I just thought I'd let you know that we're making steady progress on the new album, we in the Stu E Skinner Camp may be over subscribed with life and different projects but we're really looking forward to bringing you some thing very soon.
Well we've had such a blast at the last few gigs and you support and suggestions and reactions have left us feeling quite complete and content. Now this is not to say things won't change but as of the moment we be 3.
It's been awesome to have played with him over the last few years and we wish him all the best in his other persuits. He did add some parts to the current album demos so they still may make it on to the final product.
My album 'Once' has just received an awesome review from the LP Project. A big thanks to Lisa for taking the time to check it out. See what she has to say about it here: http://lpproject.co.uk/stu-e-skinner-once
Not only did 'Once' receive a great review from the LP Project but it's also featured in this months edition of Grapevine Magazine. Please check them out and let us know what you think. Thanks, Stu :)
The sun was shinning today and the summer is indeed lookin to be on its way. We've already got a few dates for your calendars’ (March-June) including our first northern expedition and we're working on filling the spaces up as soon as...
I just wanted to say hi and welcome you'll to the new site. The old one just wasn't cutting the mustard any more so to speak so it's out with the old and in with the new. I still intend to keep using Facebook as the first point of contact for all things Stu E Skinner related but I hope you'll enjoy visiting this site and will keep checking back....