Oli Brown and The Dead Collective – Epilogue

Oli Brown & The Dead Collective – Epilogue
Release Date: 29/03/24
Running Time: 22:03
Review by Paul Hutchings

If there was a God, then Oli Brown would be playing arenas by now. His musical journey has been one bumpy road, with many highs countered by as many lows in recent years. However, there does appear to be light for the man who over a decade ago was winning plaudits at the British Blues Awards. Three solo albums led to the formation of the raucous rock ‘n’ roll of Raveneye, who gigged relentlessly and in Nova, produced one of the best debut albums of all time. European support slots with KISS as well as Aerosmith, Halestorm and Blues Pills saw their stock soar. Then implosion, the pandemic, and Brown threw himself into his jewellery business, the amazing Black Feather Designs. 

Recovery shoots slowly emerged, and in 2023 we lapped up the two EPs he released, “Prelude” and “Prologue”. A support tour with Northern Irish rockers The Answer rebuilt his confidence, and reminded those of us who either saw him or bought the Eps that there is so much talent here it would be a travesty not to hear him play. 

“Epilogue” is the third EP by Oli Brown & the Dead Collective and precedes the band’s forthcoming UK tour. A third four-track EP, with another song drawn from the ‘Solitude Sessions’. This time it’s opener ‘Another Day Lost’, which sees Brown in phenomenal form, as he takes on a dark and melancholic semi-acoustic number with his typical unassuming style. Spine tingling vocals resonate with you as the song unwinds, deep, emotions flooding from the speakers. The backing music is unassuming, subtle, carefully caressing the soul whilst providing a contemporary feel, and something a little different from much of Brown’s back catalogue. It’s this shift in dynamic that has seen Brown change, and whilst I hate to use the word reinvent, it’s the most appropriate wording I can find. 

There’s more than a hint of the general vibe that Cardinal Black possesses on ‘I Won’t Leave’. It’s got that delicious gentle flavour, with smooth backing vocals on the chorus which ripple with atmosphere before the temperature cranks up a little to allow a bit of fire from both the Brown’s guitars. It’s a song that soars to a crescendo that leaves you gasping. ‘Home Sweet Home’ brings another aspect to the band’s sound, retaining the delicate, fragile parts whilst ensuring that the rock ‘n’ roll that all three musicians are renowned for is still present. It’s inspiring, uplifting, and beautifully crafted. 

Final track ‘Another Day Lost’ sees the opening song repeated but given a totally different workout. This is Oli Brown that one hopes is never far away, for his ability to give some heft to the subtly is never in doubt. Here the trio can ratchet things up, without losing any of the meaning or feeling. It’s a huge statement of intent, and with their UK tour just weeks away, this is justification to one of the UK’s most talented and exciting musicians. Listen to his music, get to a show, and visit Black Feather Designs. You won’t regret any of it. 

01. Another Day Lost (Solitude Sessions)
02. I Won’t Leave
03. Home Sweet Home
04. Another Day Lost

Oli Brown – Vocals /Guitar
Sam Brown – Guitar / Backing Vocals
Wayne Proctor – Drums





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