Monday, 3 March 2014

the further adventures of Terry Emm

when you've been reviewing music for a while, you'll tend to find a number of the same names keep cropping up in your inbox, it is their job after all to push the client that is paying for their services into as many places as possible, by introducing you to new music, hoping you will in turn introduce others to this new music.

so it came as something as a surprise to see Terry Emm's name in the subject field rather than being the sender, as it turns out, around his normal nine to five, Emm has not one, but two musical outlets for his own endeavours that had been brought to my attention, and it certainly seemed to be doing him a great disservice if I overlooked his recent forays.

As part of Select All Delete Save As, a debut single is being readied for March, Modern Life is War is a wide-scope sweep of post-rock with a twist of Americana, serving not only as the next chapter of a developing band formed at university that started recording experimental rock, and now has a surer direction that seems suited to sound tracking that coming of age moment from your favourite hip indie flick.

Despite clocking in at a radio friendly three minute mark, Modern Life Is War feels more like a teaser than a complete song, leaving listeners with the feeling of unfinished business as it builds and sets the tone for the full length Ultra Cultura which is due in April.  And whilst Select All Delete Save As have engaged me and piqued my interest, it is Emm's solo talents that picks at the heart strings.

Clearly preparing for a busy 2014, March also sees the release of Starlight, the title track of an album that is also scheduled for an unspecified release date later this year.  It is a perfectly pitched song that plays out as an ethereal lullaby with a gentle swell of strings adding earthly gravitas, reminiscent of the distinct style that saw the world captivated by Damian Rice, Emm seems to fall fully equipped into a niche for male singer-songwriters that has been left hollowed by strong female personalities when the once burgeoning distinction became fraughtly clich├ęd. 

Obviously Terry Emm is not putting all his eggs in one basket, so if he doesn't ride a great wave of new troubadours in these twelve months, and a post-rock revolution hasn't gripped us by the summer, at least he's still got his day job.

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