The second of the two singers is a young Londoner who has begun to perform material of his own as well as covers of other people’s, Fynn Farrell, whose abundance of skilled passion, in both his singing and his songwriting, is quite uncommon. It stands to reason that someone who puts so much of all that he’s got into his work, is going to go far indeed, and as though to confirm this in advance, in his city and elsewhere Farrell already has accrued a dedicated squad of fans, or as they also call themselves, fynnatics.
His original song, “Cry,” is a memorable recollection of a love that went unreturned, striking all the right notes for a number in this genre, and as such it is quite on a par with the covers I’ve also included in the playlist – although those who wish to avoid burning their ears on some bad language, even when as here it’s uttered from the heart, should probably fast-forward over it.
The inclusion of a few rough words in his own songwriting aside, as a performer Farrell’s persona is a distinctive composite in which – alongside what comes across as a near-total absorption in the sense of the lyrics while he also simultaneously translates them into a language of gesture that’s mesmerising to watch in its own right, composed of an expressive physicality well-punctuated every so often by a Sid Vicious-like snarl – various kinds of vocal style are mixed pleasingly together, rock, rhythm and blues, and soul most prominent amongst them.
Generally he prefers to slow down the songs he covers, and this affords Farrell (who also seems to be quite capable on the piano) more room to hit all the keys of his passion – that the procedure lends his music something of the quality he calls retro is a side benefit, though a welcome one. After all, this is a music which evidently means to last, and just about everything he sings already sounds very durable.
His version of “We Can’t Stop” is superlatively moving.