Thor Platter, Anne DeChant
Southgate House Revival, 111 E 6th St, Newport, KY
Free, 9:30pm, 21+
Cleveland singer-songwriter Thor Platter is a loyal purveyor of Americana music for many reasons. “The tradition and history of American music have influenced me my entire life; it encompasses many sounds and styles from many different eras,” he explains. “Above all, it is just good music to your ears.”
With his latest album Take Time, released October 2017, Platter is setting out to showcase his mastery of the genre, as well as capture the energy, spirit, and infectious harmonies of his live shows. Platter’s gentle, affecting vocals – which have earned him numerous comparisons to Willie Nelson – are carried along freely by the accompaniment of rollicking banjo and harmonica. Fans of the classic ‘70s singer-songwriter genre will delight in Platter’s seamless transitions from toe-tapping jams to sweetly confident ballads throughout the set’s 10 tracks.
Take Time was recorded and produced by David Mayfield at Tiger Spa in Akron, Ohio. Since most of Platter’s shows are performed as a trio (Paul Lewis on bass, Paul Kovac on Banjo), the album takes care to show off the mellow yet sparkling synergy that arises from a smaller, tight arrangement.
Platter, who grew up in Buffalo, NY, had a childhood seeped in rich musical influences – from Woody Guthrie to Bob Dylan to Flatt & Scruggs – but his biggest inspiration to date has been Neil Young. “The way [Young] lived his life, the way he recorded, not being that mainstream guy–that was a heavy influence on me,” he explains. “I’ve never wanted to be a pop star.”
True to Young’s experimental and personally driven nature, Platter approaches songcraft without specific genre boundaries, choosing instead to allow his music to evolve instinctually. He made a fast impact on Cleveland’s music scene upon moving there from Buffalo in 2008, releasing a debut solo LP in 2013 combining gospel, blues, and rock influences with bittersweet, character-driven lyrics. Platter has been the featured performer at multiple large local music festivals, and is a seasoned roadman, keeping up a steady schedule of regional gigs while continually working on new music. He will be touring in support of Take Time throughout 2018.