As the frontman of NYC revival band Five O'Clock Heroes, A.J. Ellis saw major success, releasing three albums and touring across Europe and America, gaining praise all the way.
Now he's venturing out with his first solo album, hoping to showcase a more mature style with moments of country infused into his bluesy vocals.
Whilst first single and first track on the LP 'Cheating The Czar' does well to set-up that notion, it's second tune 'Stand Up' that truly grabs my attention from the very start - probably the reason it was chosen last month to be released as single number two. Though it could be said it's repetitive at times, it's a rockabilly-laced song with some perfect melodies.
'Times In Your Life' builds perfectly from a few taps into a beautiful instrumental with some of the record's best tones woven through. There's heartbreak, tragedy and experience running thick through Ellis' vocal, and it's a wonder to hear.
Meanwhile, 'Dance All Night' brings back the fun element that some may feel is missing until this point. It's a great tap-a-long piece that wouldn't sound out of place on the radio and in the charts.
'I Belong To You' reminds me a little of The Beatles. Their influence seems strong here and that flows into next track 'Hit The Bottom', which includes the slightly crass lyrics "I was hoping for a one night stand / I was hoping you were gonna let me in."
Finishing things with the title track, Ellis does well to prove why he's always been a lead singer - a frontman who can put on a show without even being seen - simply through soundwaves.
'Bury The Devil' is released July 28.