Album, Single and EP Reviews


  BlissfulHatefulBeautiful by Johnny Marvel

BlissfulHatefulBeautiful cover art

Artist: Johnny Marvel
Title: BlissfulHatefulBeautiful
Catalogue Number: No catalogue number
Review Format: EP
Release Year: 2013

It’s that special time of the night when you’ve run out of Balvenie and you’ve run out of Bushmills. You’ve got the volume turned up to 11 and the police – thanks to your incredibly intolerant coffin dodging neighbours – are surely on the way. It’s another ASBO in the wall and it’s all the fault of, methinks Irish, band Johnny Marvel.

They sound young, they sound fresh and they know their riffs. They pull it off in other words. If you’ve ever picked up a guitar and used it for something else other than a primo tool to pick up women, then you know the story that I tell. Look closely and it is clear their dad’s, or maybe even their granddad’s, record collection has been thoroughly inspected and the best bits painted with a modern attitude. Rock music survives forever or so it seems anyway.

Jack Stewart sells the words. Laconically. He doesn’t make that much effort but that’s not the point for the songs need no more than that and, as if to illustrate just that, “Mother Summer” lurches awkwardly but you can follow the words and the feeling like he is writing them both on the walls. “Fabric Maverick” hints at the kind of complexity that a band serious about what they might yet do. The past is the new black and all that with Johnny Marvel – for it is they -going all edgy. We’re not talking limited edition dark chocolate Mars Bars either. Most conventional is “Brothers and Sisters” that could have jumped off the last flight inbound from Seattle.

The world might, after all, not be flat. I wonder if Christopher Columbus ever took a pill to get himself through a Saturday night?

This EP is available as a free download from Bandcamp.

Review Date: May 24, 2013