Front Porch Step - Whole Again [EP] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Front Porch Step

Whole Again [EP] (2014)

Pure Noise Records

In the game of folky acoustic acts, Whole Again proves to be one of the shortest yet one of the most profound pieces of music in recent years. Front Porch Step is the acoustic solo project of Columbus, OH's Jake Mcelfresh, and not only does it expose how broken yet talented he is as a singer/songwriter, but it shows that his past album, Aware, wasn't just a poetic one-shot of depression. He touches on the poignant notes of being human and once more, he drives these messages home with beautiful nails.

"A Lovely Mess" is one of the most jarring, tearjerkers I've ever stumbled across. 'I'm not the man that I once was / But I’m changing everyday because I want to find someone like you / You’ve got eyes that could tear me down / But all they do is build me up / So hold my hand before my heart erupts' sets us off and as the track progresses, it's all about human frailty. The entire song speaks about perfection or the lack thereof and leads into a neat narrative about flawed lovers. In fact, it's my track of the year.

FPS is so stripped down and majestic. "Heaven Sent" follows suit as you're eroded to the bare essentials. It emphasizes that this is an album of broken hearts for fans of Defeater and Koji. "I'll Be Home For Christmas" is a cover that helps you take a break from the heavy-handed depression on tap and does allow for a good respite. After all, there's so much emotional content offered. "Whole Again" rounds off things for an album that should have been longer but on its own, it really does leave you struggling to cope yet yearning more. This contrasting battle and overall duality lends a lot of credence to the power of FPS and is another fine example of why Mcelfresh deserves more attention.