Laura Copestake

We Move: A Review

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Following the acoustic folk of Early In the Morning and then the more soulful sound of Post Tropical, the third studio album from James Vincent McMorrow, We Move, stretches across the musical spectrum and combines beat-based sounds and gripping vocals to create a collection of honest, yet powerful songs.

The opening track, Rising Water, immediately shows McMorrow’s style shift. With synthesised drum and bass, piano, and McMorrow’s iconic voice, we’re given something that sounds current and soulful, but has an underlying 80s feel. For me the vocals are the best instrument on the album and nothing can compare to the vibrant sound of McMorrow’s own voice. On tracks such as Last Story the gospel style vocals help create a deep, smooth melody that soulfully dances over the strong beats that are prominent throughout the whole album.

Evil continues this bold gospel sound and is one of the highlights of the album. The layers of energetic backing vocals, strong drum beats and McMorrow’s falsetto styled voice result in an explosive track that beautifully transitions into the second half of the album.

However, Get Low pushes in a slightly different direction to the previous tracks. The light solo guitar-flicks set a rhythm which is joined by a hip-hop like beat to produce a flawless, delicate tune which showcases McMorrow’s wonderful lyric writing ability. This is echoed with Lost Angles. The gentle piano gives a nostalgic nod towards some of McMorrow’s earlier music and as the song progresses we’re left with the resonant lyrics ‘you’re how I get through it,which brings the whole album to a warm, heartfelt end.

We Move shows how creating music takes you on a journey, and James Vincent McMorrow’s journey has led him to crafting a bold and captivating album that musically feeds the soul. Even though we have come a long way from McMorrow’s earlier acoustic sound, his attention to detail remains the same. From lush, harmonising vocals, to drum beats, to rich guitar melodies, there is nothing McMorrow has missed in this album and the finished product is nothing less than brilliant.

 

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