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Morganway - 'Morganway' Hot

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Written by Central Electronic Brain     April 27, 2020    
 
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This band's potential is off the scale.

Due to editorial time constraints, I almost entirely focus on acts I already adore. However, once or twice a year an album is submitted that totally blows me away and I have to review it. The latest is from East Anglian six-piece Morganway. It will shock nobody whatsoever that they are predominately female-fronted, although they don't sit within my usual and expected Symphonic/Power/Heavy Metal territory. It's actually quite hard to pigeonhole Morganway because they feature a plethora of different influences and sounds, including Rock, Folk, Country and Pop alongside the odd dash of Alternative and Progressive. My first comparison was a Folk/Country-based Fleetwood Mac, but my colleague/Assistant Editor Dave Crompton suggested they were like "The Corrs with balls."

Formed in 2016 by twin brothers Callum (vocals/bass/rhythm guitar) and Kieran Morgan (lead guitar) along with Matt Brocklehurst (keyboards), the line-up is completed by Ed Bullinger (drums), SJ Mortimer (vocals) and Nicole J Terry (fiddle), the latter really contributing to their quite unusual sound. Whilst the music is captivating in itself, it's the spectacular vocals of Mortimer that seal the deal. Ranging from soft and sensitive to powerful with a real roar, her delivery is as varied as the music behind it. The fact Callum Morgan also steps up to the mic only adds to the Fleetwood Mac comparison.

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This self-titled, full-length debut (following two EPs in 2016 and 2017) contains eleven tracks and each one is a winner regardless of its style. From the chiming guitar and dual vocals of the fantastic 'My Love Ain't Gonna Save You', the monstrously brilliant 'Let Me Go', the slightly Dare-sounding ('Calm Before The Storm' era) 'You Can Only Die Once' and the dreamy Pop/Folk Rock of 'In A Dream (Coming Home)', through the haunting ballad 'Frozen In Our Time', the wonderfully infectious Country jig-like 'London Life', the powerful vocals of the rollickingly excellent 'Hurricane' and the Melodic Rock-tinged 'New Way', to the beautiful 'Daylight Rising', the catchy 'I See People' and the multi-faceted 'I Want No Other Love', this album is truly sensational.

Morganway's amazing debut is certainly a strong contender for my 2019 Album Of The Year – it really is that good. This band's potential is off the scale and I've read they're even better in the live environment. Morganway are a rather special and quite unique band, and this supremely talented group have unleashed an utterly stunning debut that should be on every reader's radar.

Dave Scott

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