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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 4 July 2014
"Wanted On Voyage” is the debut album by George Ezra. Listening to his weathered voice, one may think he is an old hand in the music business - but he is only 21. Best known for his hit single “Budapest,” the singer-songwriter took his inspiration for this first album (after two previously released EPs) mainly from a train journey through Europe he undertook last year. He wrote no songs during that trip, but kept a journal in which he later based his songs, so that’s why the track-list on “Wanted On Voyage” reads so much like a travel diary.

Although the Bristol based singer-songwriter mentions European capitals (besides the good-natured “Budapest,” “Barcelona” and also “Blind Man In Amsterdam“ on the deluxe edition) he gets his musical inspiration mainly from the USA. He cites Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie as great examples, although this inspiration isn’t really noticeable. Summery songs like “Drawing Board” and “Listen To The Man” are more in line with modern folk-pop than the politically engaged songs from Ezra's idols. His deep voice and emphatically American accent make him vocally stands out among his peers. In “Spectacular Revival” his vocals are even somewhat reminiscent of Nick Cave.

Producer Cam Blackwood (Florence And The Machine, London Grammar) has delivered a neat and balanced production in which Ezra's voice prominently emerges. With his breezy pop songs, he might be seen as a kind of missing link between Ed Sheeran and Jack Johnson. Despite clear stylistic choices, “Wanted On Voyage” is very rich in contrast. You’ve got the foot-stomper “Cassy O’,” a very catchy track that’s one of my favorites on this album, but there’s also the bluesy “Breakaway,” a kind of hybrid between a slave-song and a Hootie And The Blowfish track. “Stand By Your Gun” is a carefree pop song, while “Did You Hear It Rain?” is a mix of gospel and country and then you also have the disco-ish “Stand By Your Gun.”

Obviously, George Ezra has a distinctive voice. If I had to sound a minor critical note, it’s that his singing voice would fit so nicely with the soul/blues-genre. Instead, on this record he doesn’t go much outside the already well-worn channels of pop music. But that nitpicking issue aside, this is a great debut album. Calling it a brilliant record would be a tad exaggerated, but pleasant and downright beautiful, it sure is. Recommended!
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I first heard George Ezra on Later with Jools Holland earlier this year when he sang Budapest - it was like a breath of fresh air! I then checked him out on Spotify which had his two EPs available - they were both really good so I pre-ordered the deluxe version of Wanted on Voyage - his debut album -on CD at that point. The release date was delayed I guess to coincide with George's appearance at Glastonbury this year, but thanks to Amazon's AutoRip feature I was able to play the album at a few minutes past midnight today!

The deluxe version contains an additional four tracks more than the standard CD release but is currently about four quid more from Amazon. Both versions contain George's two best known songs - Budapest and Did You Hear the Rain? If you saw George at Glastonbury, or caught his set from the John Peel stage via the Red Button, then you will probably want the deluxe version of his album. George reminds me, in some ways, of the young Billy Bragg I first saw over thirty years ago and I hope he has the talent to go on to have a successful career in the future - the signs are good so far!

Whichever version of George's album you buy I'm sure it is one that will be played a lot! An unreserved five stars.
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For what it's worth, this old git thinks that George Ezra deserves the praise he's received from a lot of quarters. I've heard a lot of young singer-songwriters come and often go in my time but I think Ezra has the makings of something special. He's young and raw and, in my view, very exciting; he writes tuneful, passionate songs and has a wonderful, throaty voice which sounds as though it belongs to someone twice his age but has the thrilling energy of youth behind it.

There's probably not a lot of point in going on at length because people looking at this page will know about George Ezra already, but in my view this album is very good indeed. It has fine songs sung with genuineness and sincerity by a sensational voice, it is very well arranged and produced and still sounds great after repeated playing. What more could you want?
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on 14 September 2014
After hearing "Budapest" on the radio quite frequently, I was seriously debating buying this CD as I had never heard of George Ezra before. I had the CD in my hand many times and even in my shopping basket and decided I didn't think it was worth it. Yesterday I heard "Blame It On Me" on the radio while in the car. I went right to the supermarket and bought the CD. I kick myself for not buying this sooner. This is one brilliant CD with some very catchy tunes on it. This young man has a fantastic voice to begin with. His song writing efforts for such a young man are also brilliant. Since purchasing this CD only yesterday, I've listened to it three times. Seems I can't get enough of the brilliance that comes out of the speakers. In my honest opinion, every song except one, "Spectacular Rival", is a gem. I still haven't been able to listen to the final track on the this CD. It drives me totally bonkers. All in all, this is one CD that is a must. I think we have a rising star on our hands. Looking forward to hearing more of George Ezra.
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on 1 July 2014
What a wonderful voice, add some great songs and you've got George Ezra's "Wanted on Voyage".
This is going to be the first of many, many hits. This guy is going to go further than far. Just brilliant.
I hope he is able to cope with the success that is going to be his.
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on 30 October 2014
The man`s got a good voice for sure, although he goes a bit off key during the slow part of Cassy O, quite a few of the tracks, as is common with a lot of songs these days consist of lyric lines being repeated over and over again which can get a bit irritating, but overall this is a nice album but nothing more than that.
`Did you hear the rain ?` is the stand out track for me, while `Spectacular Rival` reminds me very much of a group I used to listen to called Dead Can Dance. Don`t get me wrong George is a young man and this is a fine debut album but I reserve 5 stars for outstanding albums not for albums that are just `good`.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 24 August 2014
I first heard George Ezra (Barnett) on my local BBC
Three Counties Radio station whilst listening to
BBC Introducing last year, and was most impressed
with Budapest, the first track that I heard from
this Hertford born young man.

George has a unique bass-baritone voice, raw, bluesy,
deep and mellow all rounded into one sound, His !

I love this deluxe version of Wanted on Voyage, 16
tracks, each of which deliver a different facet of
this brilliant 21 year old singer-songwriters voice.

It is hard to pick particular favourite tracks, all
seem to appeal to whatever mood. He states that his
influences were Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie, but he
can certainly sing better than they could at that

For me: Cassy O', Did You Hear The Rain? are very
special, with Spectacular Rival, bringing old Scott
Walker songs to mind. The more I listen to this album
the more I want to listen again.
I think that should older people take the time to listen
to his music, then George Ezra will have a wide appeal.
I am 68 and am already becoming an Ezra-ite.

Great Stuff.
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on 15 July 2014
This is the first cd I have bought in ages. Heard the track 'Budapest' on TV and just had to buy it. The album is great. George has a great bluesy voice
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on 8 July 2014
I came across George Ezra when he was in the BBC sound of 2014. Totally bowled over by his incredible voice, I've been a pretty dedicated fan ever since - and I've never been a dedicated fan before! I was really looking forward to this album, having picked up his EPs on the way, so expectations were high. It hasn't disappointed at all and is just brilliant. There's a lot of variation through the album; great lyrics delivered with such a phenomenal sound - what's not to love?
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on 28 April 2016
An original and incredibly talented artist, this is the only time I have bothered to buy the deluxe version of an album and the four songs it gives you really are worth spending the extra money on. I can't wait to see how this artist develops.
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