James Vincent McMorrow's Debut Full-Length "Early In The Evening" is Due out Jan. 25th (Vagrant) ~ BrooklynRocks: NYC Music Blog

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

James Vincent McMorrow's Debut Full-Length "Early In The Evening" is Due out Jan. 25th (Vagrant)

James Vincent McMorrow - If I Had A Boat by VagrantRecords

James Vincent McMorrow's Debut Full-Length 'Early In The Evening' is Due out Jan. 25th (Vagrant)Following up on his self-titled EP that was released last October, James Vincent McMorrowʼs full-length debut, Early In The Morning, will be released in the US on Jan. 25, 2011. Early In The Morning was released in Ireland in March 2010 and landed the #1 spot on iTunes in the country. James embarked on his first proper Irish tour last year with a sold out show in Dublin and offers from various labels to release the album in other countries began to filter in. When James heard Vagrant was interested, he knew that was the perfect fit. “Iʼve been a fan of the label since school, and getting to put out a record alongside bands like The Hold Steady, Edward Sharpe, and School Of Seven Bells is amazing.” James Vincent McMorrow's self-titled EP served as a teaser for the forthcoming domestic full-length release and it contains two songs off of Early In The Morning along with two previously unearthed demos.
From start to finish, Early In The Morning is a ten-song recollection of one manʼs journey through a time of change and transition. Having four years worth of songs written and endless time to document them allowed for James to dissect each song and perfect it. Early In The Morning begins with a five-part harmony echoing over the sounds of an organ and folk guitar in the eerie opener, "If I Had A Boat". “I always knew when I wrote this song that it would open the album,” acknowledges James. “The last two years that preceded this record being made involved some of the greatest change Iʼd ever experienced, physical, emotional and spiritual. When I write lyrics they come together in a pretty uncoordinated way, lines get written, slowly link up until a story reveals itself. It was only when I was finished that I looked back and saw the words for what they were, realized what they meant.” Serving as a perfect prelude to the nine tracks that follow, "If I Had A Boat" lyrically captures the underlying tone of the entire album. Written about transformation and change, the first song is equal parts thoughtfully crafted words and inventive instrumental arrangements, serving as a foundation for the songs to come.

Towards the latter half of the record a darker tone emerges, or as James puts it, “the closest Iʼll ever get to proper mythical fantasy writing!” These songs are where we find him at his most literate and ornate, creating ominous figures, and a wholly tangible sense of tension and foreboding. Drawing on his childhood love of Roald Dahl, as well as his fascination with American novelists such as John Steinbeck and F Scott Fitzgerald, James draws life from their writings because “they all examine the darker less spoken about aspects of life, solitude, disillusionment. Iʼm not one for defining a lyric, or what it definitively means, but songs like ʻfollow you down to the red oak treeʼ, ʻfrom the woodsʼ, and ʻdown the burning ropesʼ are certainly me exorcising the underside of my personality. The characters I create in those songs, the ones existing in the shadows, they are all elements of me for sure.

And then the album draws to a close just as it started, with a bucolic five-part harmony. The title track of the record, which James describes as a “simple ode to the love that I have”, is backed by a banjo and a piano. This is a folk round that fades out as quietly as it arrives with the squeak of the piano stool serving as a final reminder of the homespun nature of what has just occurred.

James Vincent McMorrow