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With a classical background and a medieval fixation, Sydney’s Jack Colwell has released a debut album of pop music with classical inclinations. But while purists may be cringing already, and others may be wary of elitist tendencies, it should be mentioned earlier rather than later that Picture Window manages to strike an admirable balance between the two musical worlds. From The Ground realises Colwell’s ideas wonderfully, with clever piano and flute lines ornamenting what is fundamentally a sombre pop tune. Captain’s Melody is a delightfully catchy number filled with further flute and cello parts to ensure that the tune doesn’t become too twee or disposable. This song particularly recalls the work of Beirut and their quirky instrumentations, with the likeness between the gravelly voices of Colwell and Beirut singer Zach Condon sealing the deal. Likewise, the dirty blues of Banquet strongly recalls our own home-grown hero Nick Cave. It’s tracks like the rich Spitfire, with its endless melodic tangents and refreshing sounds, which best show that Colwell is a talent to keep an eye on. While some of Picture Window may already seem a tad familiar, tunes such as the recorder-laced duet Waiting For Thee secure Colwell as a force to be reckoned with in the domain of left-of-field pop music. *** ½