Australian artist, Gavan Waldby, has just released his latest single, Thanks For That, and we’ve been taking several listens here at the Send Me Your Ears studio today.

Gavan describes Thanks For That as the most heartfelt song that he’s ever written. It’s a personal thank you to the women in his life for helping through a difficult time. It’s a thank you to his wife, his daughter, his sister and his late mother.

Thanks For That has what we could describe as a “beard folk” feel to it! It’s quirky and twee and ambles along, giving thanks, verse by verse, for each of the women mentioned above.

Starting on hammond organ with a looped percussion part (kick and shaker), the song then brings in acoustic strummed guitar. When the vocals come in, Gavan takes the lead with some female backing vocals (his sister) sitting in the background. There are moments where, despite being from Australia, the vocals reminded us just a touch of Ringo Star!

As the song progresses, more incidental instrumentation is added, we heard flute, strings and a mellotron weaving their way in between the layered vocal lines.

Lyrically, this is a very personal song with some definite specific mentions in it. This is a great expression of love and affection for the women in Gavan’s life but it has the possibility that it may detract from garnering attention from a wider audience. We’d suggest perhaps pitching the song to local radio with an explanation of the inspiration for the song. That may be the best way to secure air play. Sitting at almost 4 and a half minutes, this is unlikely to be a commercial hit (music directors can be so picky!) but it is nonetheless a very touching and heartfelt tribute.

From a production perspective, a boost at around 70Hz will give the thump of the kick drum a little more ‘meat’. The acoustic guitar is resonating around 180Hz so a surgical cut here would bring the peaking tone more in line with the tones around it. The shaker playing throughout is a nice touch and iit gives the whole track a certain amount of brightness, however in our opinion it is a little piercing in the 11-12kHz range so a cut here would bring that under control a little. There is a slight lack of ‘character’ in the high-mids so a wide boost centred around 4kHz would add to the presence and definition of the track.

The writing and recording of this track was clearly a very emotional journey for Gavan Waldby and we thoroughly take our hats off for this level of courage to lay his soul bare. This was the first time we’d come across Waldby’s music today. Thanks For That is a gentle heartfelt folk ballad that will tug at the heartstrings.