Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.
In this afternoon’s edition of the Independent Spotlight, we’re going to be delving into the Russian-American artist Oleg Frish. His new single, ‘The Things We Did Last Summer,’ celebrates twenty years in broadcasting. The track is taken off of his new album, ‘Oleg Frish, Duets With My American Idols.’ Frish paired with some phenomenal legends for the record, including the late, great Ben E. King. Let’s explore the new single.
‘The Things We Did Last Summer’ was originally made famous by Dean Martin. It’s worth spinning Martin’s rendition prior to Frish’s in order to give some context to the cover. Martin’s was characteristically very sweeping with lovely orchestrations. I absolutely love that Frish elected not to pursue that route of covering the tune. Instead, his instrumentation is subdued, simplistic, and acoustic.
Frish’s soundscape isn’t the only thing that makes his cover worth listening to. A commenter on his Sound Cloud remarked that his ‘voice was born to sing these songs.’ They’re entirely right, and it was. Frish’s personality and presence is masterfully elegant and perfect for the sound. ‘The Things We Did Last Summer’ would be perfect in a small, intimate venue. Frish doesn’t need an orchestra backing him, which is admirable and definitely unique to him.
In that regard, Frish’s execution reminds me of Bob Dylan last year when he released his Sinatra cover album, ‘Shadows In The Night.’ Of course, Frish has a beautiful voice, and Dylan now sounds like ate gravel for breakfast, but the comparison in execution is eerily similar. Both of them realized they could cover the famous standards without an orchestra and without the stereotypical accompaniment and be equally effective.
‘The Things We Did Last Summer’ makes a strong case for ‘Duets With My Idols.’ Go spin it on Sound Cloud and connect with Frish on his site and social media!