Opinion Review

Loki Rothman: The Way Back

You may know about Loki Rothman. He’s the Capetonian guitar prodigy who made it to the top six of SA’s Got Talent, current guitarist for Jack Parow and now, a solo artist as well. His Facebook page is full of videos ready to go viral – especially his fingerstyle cover of ‘Uptown Funk’.

Loki can do just about anything with a guitar, whether it be fingerstyle, flamenco, country or shedding electric solos. If you’ve seen him playing the living daylights out of his Stratocaster at a Jack Parow gig, you may be expecting “The Way Back” to be guitar-driven. However, Loki has opted for a different approach – he’s used his debut album to prove that he is much more of a musician than just a guitarist. He shows exceptional skill in producing, writing and singing as well. Seems unfair, doesn’t it?

Lie To Myself features classical guitar playing and exotic instrumentation, topping it off with a screaming guitar solo. All the while, catchy verses and chorus still work perfectly. Loki’s ability to combine disparate elements into a highly enjoyable package is something to be admired. The highlights of the album were these moments where Loki’s pop sensibility and exceptional musicianship meet. ‘Light These Fires’ is catchy and straightforward but he manages to squeeze in an impressive guitar solo at the end for good measure.

As a vocalist, Loki boasts both great range and unique tone. Performance ability aside, the lyrics are the usual pop fare and make little attempt at deeper themes. The words “fire”, “home” and “love” appear extensively throughout, especially in the more electronic tracks. A few acoustic songs on the album prove an exception, taking on witty lyricism reminiscent of John Mayer specifically on,’ You Learn Everytime’. “You thought you learned your lesson/ Still you learn every time.”

There’s nothing about “The Way Back” that’s accidental. It’s well-made, confident and sure. A solid pop offering that spans genres effectively with many pleasant surprises along the way.

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Listen to ‘The Way Back’ on below on Deezer.