Top Singles of 2018: 1) Ben Howard, A Boat To An Island On The Wall

At seven plus minutes, this was clearly not a single, but it was the first track played on Annie Mac’s radio show to announce the new album, Noonday Dream. When Ben wrote the intense and wrenching song, The End Of The Affair, I found it hard to imagine that he could come up with another song of similar multi layered and epic proportions, but here it is.

If you close your eyes you can imagine that you’re sitting on a harbour wall, listening to the sounds of the sea, vessels coming and going, sailor’s chatter. Ben’s voice is deep and velvety, akin to immersing yourself in a warm bath, with just the right amount of melancholy to keep you intrigued. As the slightly echoing, slightly mumbling vocal continues, the song builds beautifully – seven minutes plus allows the cello and guitar to contribute in their own time without any sense of indulgence. Gorgeous, stunning, beautifully crafted, it’s goosebumps all the way with this masterpiece.

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