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Ardentjohn new album Malin Head on IndependentMusicReviews

Malin Head by Ardentjohn

I appreciate the simplicity in the songs, the honest reflections in the lyrics and the landscapes painted by the instrumentation.

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Edinburgh based Ardentjohn is capturing my attention. 6 years after the release of 2013’s Waiting For The Season, Malin Head is a nice follow up with some great tracks and lush instrumentation.

Malin Head Vinyl by ardentjohn on IMR

The album is symbiotic with its real-life counterpart, Malin Head Point in Donegal, where many a heart-breaking farewell was made to loved ones before people sailed off to the promised new world, full of hope & optimism but in the knowledge they were leaving the homeland behind, often forever.

Ardentjohn, Adulation Music

Magic Everywhere starts the album on a great tone, building in layers of sound and capping off a melancholic landscape in the style of a Midlake anthem burgeoning with eclectic sensibilities. This track really drew me in. Love the simple kit, and fetching instrumentation.

Another tune that stood out was Orange Nights. This track brings the listener to bear on a rolling wave of sound surfing over rich moody rhythm. Add in some folksy-pop vocal, and sit back with a glass of Berliner Weisse, to make his listening moment a success.

There are moments in each song that caught my attention, some more than others. I appreciate the simplicity of the songs, the honest reflections in the lyrics and the Franklin Carmichael-esque landscapes painted by the instrumentation. Take the time to listen throughout and perhaps kick the dial up a notch on the final track, The Long Goodbye.

I have only heard the digital files. That said, there are so many earthy tones, and soft arrangements, that ultimately I think the real joy will come from taking some time to spin the vinyl.


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