Kevin PM, aka Ancient City singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, visual artist and educator Kevin Mahoney, has released his first full-length album, burning.
Out now on Jacksonville’s own Long Jump Records, the LP is the artist’s third release on the label after a pair of EPs, 2020’s Fondly* and 2021’s And Then Forever. Mahoney wrote the 10 tracks that would become burning between the summers of 2020 and 2021, he said on Instagram, recording them at Long Jump in late 2021 with engineering, mixing and mastering from Richard Dudley.
burning is soothing and contemplative above all else, creating a powerful sense of peace and introspection through not much more than Mahoney’s rich baritone vocals and gentle acoustic guitar playing. But when other instruments are introduced—the harmonicas on “abandoned” and others, the distorted electric guitar of “happy gilmore,” the rolling-thunder cymbals of “yes, i’ve heard that story before,” the electric keyboard on “the temple”—their presences are all the more felt for it.
Mahoney’s sound is reminiscent of Bill Callahan’s, from his oaken voice to his evocative songwriting and sly sense of humor: “happy gilmore” seems to quote straight from the Adam Sandler comedy’s DVD case (“Make way for the pro golf circuit’s worst nightmare / A hilarious comedy that scores a hole in one”), only to then deliver the emotional sucker-punch of, “Do you remember falling in love with your friends? / Did you pull back and tuck your legs and arms in / Or did you fall with outstretched hands?”
But it’s lead single “don’t come running” that can serve as the most concise cross-section of the record, from its ambling melody and Americana accents to its unrushed tempo and Mahoney’s plaintive lyricism. burning is a record you curl up with like a good book on a rainy day—a cozy little world unto itself.
When not performing solo as Kevin PM, or with his band featuring members of Gainesville’s Room Thirteen, Mahoney teaches drawing and sculpture at St. Augustine’s Flagler College.
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