Words: Laura Rosierse
We know him from Dutch Nederbeat band The Kik, but recently he is better known as Simon Keats, the man who went on a solo adventure! Paul Zoontjes is the man behind the alias, and he released his concept album ‘Falling Star’ today. It’s a collection of eleven indie pop songs, sprinkled with a touch of Americana.
His guitar-driven sound echoes through the Dutch music scene like a breath of fresh air, in combination with his unrefined and pure vocals, we warmly welcome the music of Simon Keats. Candid and unhurried, ‘Rebel Rain’ is the album-opener, and a perfect example of his kind and calming sound. His subtle confidence gives his Americana pop songs an extra layer of meaning, and his history in music shines through in his determined sound.
For ‘Finding My Way’ he collaborated with Judy Blank, and we can’t imagine two musicians that would work better together than Keats and Blank. Possibly Keats and Struijk… Who we hear on ‘It Has To Be Slow’, singer-songwriter Stephanie Struijk also brings a refined pop sound to the mix, however, it’s just a tad too sugar sweet for us. We prefer the more upbeat ‘She’s a Girl’, to which we can slowly dream away thanks to its fine harmonies. One of our other favourites is the rich and layered dream pop song ‘Carey-Ann’, but without a doubt on number 1 is closer ‘I’ve Got Life’. Incredibly catchy and hard to ever get out of your head, this must be our new favourite spring anthem, and luckily we don’t mind having it stuck in our head!
Simon Keats says he believes in the power of imperfection, but on this album that imperfection is nowhere to be found, every detail is operated in precision, every note is played correctly and every voice is well warmed up. His ‘Falling Star’ is a great collection of honest and classic pop songs that thanks to Simon Keats, we are happy to add to our music library!