With the now disbanded The Sides, a once promising indie-rock outfit from the UK’s Lake District, the band’s singer has wasted little time in venturing out with a solo project. Civil War
takes the fleeting tempos from The Sides’ predominant fixture and intersperses it with a much more ambitious soundscape. There’s a familiarity from his antecedent pastime – the body of the EP offering the same kind of indie-rock riffs and attitude-laden vocals associated with the genre – but it’s a far more intricate experience than previous, with a number of genres based firmly at the core of these pieces. The driving desert-tinged stoner groove on “Be Like You” gets things fired up, showering the song with ethereal vocals that add a welcoming mystic to this ride-out tune, with the added enjoyment coming from its dynamic soaring melodies wrestling with grinding riffs. More subtle offerings like “Civil War” present a variety of sounds and textures: from the acoustic guitar and fuzzy bass, to the melancholic washings of the song’s guitar effects. Couple that with James Carling’s tight drum work and it corelates into being one of the strongest numbers here. As with The Sides, Murray’s vocal work is continuously on point. He has a keen ear for delivering beautiful melodies with an unforgettable hook that sticks with you, enhancing the instrumentals, but highlighting just how talented he is as a singer. Overall, this EP delivers a natural evolution on his previous project, adding musical growth and maturity in a way that will appeal to The Sides enthusiast as well as a much broader audience. Though Civil War
sticks to one speed, it offers excellent drum work, fantastic vocals and enough new ideas to set Macca on a new and exciting pathway.
SPECIAL EDITION: N/A
ALBUM STREAM//PURCHASE: https://macmurray.bandcamp.com/releases