- 17 Apr 14
Poptastic harmonies on debut from Dublin Duo
For a millisecond, this reviewer thought a certain Manchester icon and his equally legendary onetime six-string sidekick had reconvened for a duets album! A quick gander at the pair on the front cover confirmed this was something else altogether. Morrissey and Marshall are Dubliners Darren Morrissey and Greg Marshall, formerly of five-piece outfit Deshonos. They are currently trading as a pop/folk harmony duo in a Simon & Garfunkel or Everly Brothers vein.
A stint busking in London led to a chance encounter with Magic Number, Sean Gannon. This, in turn, led to further useful contacts, resulting in this sparkling, John Reynolds-produced debut. Replete with cheery pop melodies and catchy harmonies And So It Began opens with the Dylanesque title-track, which sounds like it could have been recorded in 1965. ‘I’ve Got A Plan’ is effervescent 60s pop (The Turtles’ ‘Happy Together’ meets the Hollies’ ‘Bus Stop’?), while the Beatles-influenced ‘Pack Up Lady’ echoes of Val Doonican’s ‘Walk Tall’ no less!
Elsewhere, the lightly psychedelic ‘A Song From The Birds’ borrows Al Kooper’s keyboard riff from Dylan’s ‘Like A Rolling Stone’ while ‘Mantra’ is for all the world like a George Harrison or a Donovan tune. It’s not all sweetness and light : they turn their attention to more serious matters on ‘In Need of Guidance’ (about the London riots of 2011). The full band-backed ‘High And Low’ broaches the subject of depression on a tune which harks back to mid-’90s Brit Pop. The new Peter and Gordon anyone?