Having previously covered Jacob Dixon’s singles leading up to his sophomore EP Lionheart, GigSoup is proud to share Dixon’s newest release that finds the singer-songwriter balancing between indie-folk and indie-rock in a unique soundscape while exploring the fearlessness he experienced as a child, the treachery of taking his first few steps into adulthood, and the process of figuring out who he is going to be. Lionheart is an exquisite portrayal of Dixon’s ability to weave his poetic songwriting into lyrics that captures the emotional battles of the heart with sensitive and focused care. Dixon’s poignant lyrics steal the show with the common thread of navigating the rough waters of adulthood and reminiscing on childhood – reminding listeners to carry the fearless wonder of a child with them into the challenges and stresses that life will, inevitably, meet you with.
Comprised of five songs, Lionheart showcases Dixon’s lyrical vulnerability and vocal strengths, as he weaves through songs that detail his journey of growing up and entering the waters of adulthood. The lead single, “Fountain” enters aggressively with a rock sound that supports Dixon’s dark lyrics as he admits he doesn’t live perfectly even if it appears so on the outside. Yes, he makes mistakes too – “Take me down to the water, heaven knows I falter, never thought I’d wander from that fountain I’m going under.” Dixon continues in the same indie-rock vein with the single “Find My Place”, teasing pop-punk angst from the singer-songwriter as he yearns to find his place in the world. The last song to be written for the EP, Dixon’s yearning to find his place in the world is evident. “This song is about how I hope to find the place where I fit in…where my passion matches up with what I do every day. I think lots of people feel this way, although on the outside it looks like everyone else has already found that place for themselves,” says Dixon. Dixon further reflects on this desire in “Slip”, arguably the EP’s most vulnerable track, with an emotional plea to himself to not allow life to slip by but to enjoy every small moment that is a part of his life journey. His acoustic indie-folk style is highlighted in both “Slip” and the following track, “River Jordan”, as he delves into his own faith to create an abstract painting of thoughts that explores his personal beliefs. Finally, the EP concludes with the title track “Lionheart”, that sees Dixon hold a conversation between his current adult self and his kid self as the two conflict between remaining true to himself and falling to pressures to be someone else as he grows and evolves.
Overall, Lionheart carries an introspective, mature sound that has evolved since Dixon’s debut EP New Zealand (2017). His musical influences are evident with a musical style and instrumentation reminiscent of Mumford & Sons, lyrical ingenuity like that of Noah Gundersen, and Ed Sheeran-esque vocals. However, Dixon doesn’t emulate his icons exactly, but he creates the ideal mash-up of his own unique soundscape. Exploring the crossroads of indie-folk and indie-rock, Dixon undoubtedly brings fulfillment to each of his songs as the nostalgic words wash over listeners.