When she was still at Eurovision, Tamar Kaprelian decided to release her new EP. Yours to keep was released and now is the time to see what we think of this. What’s the solo stuff of this Genealogy singer like? Some of you may have heard her 2010 hit New Day… Well, expect something else from Yours To Keep.

Let’s kick off with the basic details: This EP was released on 19th May, in the middle of Eurovision week. There are five songs on it, including the title single, Yours to keep. What’s the sound you can expect? It’s a laid back country pop feel. Some of the songs would not look bad on a The Common Linnets album, so to say. Two of the songs are Billy Joel covers: Summer, Highland Falls and Don’t Ask Me Why.

To be clear: If you want a good party night at the club, this is not the EP for you. If you expect the big vocal acrobatics Genealogy showed in Eurovision: Nope. So what can we expect instead? Beautiful songs, perfect after a stressful day. Relaxation kicks in as soon as you put this EP on.

Tamar takes us straight to the United States with this EP and not just the regions you’d associate with country music (Nashville etc.). In the song Wanna Go There With You, Tamar looks for the more uptempo pop touch to the EP and finds it. She takes us to New York and wants to go there with you. The song works out well, but is slightly out of touch with the rest of the EP. A nice change.

Don’t Ask Me Why also goes the direct of uptempo, but (thankfully) doesn’t quite get there. This Billy Joel cover stays midtempo and that is the perfect decision. This song feels like an acoustic session, it’s very pure and direct. Just the way I like it. There’s a nice violin in it, a good voice – What more could I wish for?

The lead single, Yours To Keep is a highlight of the EP and a very good choice for a lead single. The lyrics are inspiring. As the chorus says:

Take your heart, you can have it all
Anything that’s there is yours my friend
Take your dreams, yeah, they’re yours to keep
Everyday you wake up
There’s a lot of things you can be

A classic country tune, not too heavy, not too overproduced. It’s just very well written, made and sung. It however doesn’t leave as much as an impression as the last two songs I’d like to mention…

Lyrically, you can’t really beat the highlight that is Summer, Highland Falls. No surprise as this is the second Billy Joel cover. There’s not a single word which has not been carefully chosen back when Joel sang it and Tamar manages to put the right accents on the words that matter.

Now we are forced to recognize our inhumanity
Our reason coexists with our insanity
And though we choose between reality and madness
It’s either sadness or euphoria

However, as it is an original Tamar song and the opener of the EP, I’d have to say my absolute highlight of these songs is Ride Until You Run. This is the perfect way to introduce the EP: Tamar brings us straight to the heart of country in America as she crosses the Georgia county line (a nice reference to the neighbours of her Eurovision country, perhaps…?). The instruments here deliver perfectly and I am a fan of Tamar’s voice.

To summarise this: Five reasons why you should buy Tamar’s Yours To Keep:

  • Do you enjoy country music, but not in the Dolly Parton way? Buy this.
  • Do you enjoy Billy Joel? Buy this.
  • If you’re looking for lyrical masterpieces: Buy this.
  • Do you need some new music to just relax when you’re home? Buy this.
  • If all four of the above apply: Buy this.

It’s rather simple, yeah. My advice is just to give this a listen (it’s on Spotify and iTunes offers previews). You’ll get a good feel of the EP and I’m sure it’ll feature on many of my playlists in the future. It’s been a while since I was so enthusiastic about an entire album…

escXtra Review Rating: 9.5/10

Media Liaison: One of the founding members at escXtra. I'm the Dutchman who loves every little idiotic Eurovision fact there is. I usually listen to a lot of Eurovision music, but when I'm not, I listen to country music, schlager and pop, but mostly artists like Tina Turner, Emma, Ilse DeLange and Helene Fischer. On escXtra, you can find me doing pretty much anything that needs doing: Interviews, liveblogs or just your daily portion of news!

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