MORNING TOURIST – The Endless Eve (Blaggers Records)

The Endless EveMorning Tourist’s The Endless Eve is an ever-churning alt-folk album (with incredibly persistent percussion!) that zigs and zags in oddly melodic curves, nice acoustic guitar moments, and lyrics that roam the universe with constant “what if” speculation, and yet are still grounded with bare wire insight. My friend, Kilda Defnut, said of the album: “This music is like my garden, where weird things pop up that I didn’t even plant”.

That said, Morning Tourist (actually Sean McKinney) strums and soars during the first song ‘New Leaf’, with its acoustic friction of a juxtaposed emotive-pumped brake that can’t stop the absolutely full-throttled gorgeous melodies. The tune is hard spun folk rope which conjures the sound of Beck, circa Sea Change, The Villagers, with their title song from Becoming A Jackal, and the quick acoustic vibe of Jake Bugg’s first album. Big compliments!

And ‘Predictable’ struts with a tough guitar chord sound and a melody that wanders into a labyrinth of sublime twists and turns, with here and there lovely electric guitar bursts, while an unexpected whistle seals the punchy enigmatic tune’s final grooves.

There’s more: ‘Solitaire’ spins acoustic joy of folk-pop energy, with a chugging chaser of a rock ‘n’ roll (somewhat sober!) stardust stutter-stepped dance. The same is true for ‘Wilson’, as it delves into a warm versed folk-rock with a big epic cinema sound. Nice! And ‘Small Flame’, with its chimed guitar pulse and steel pedal, sings yet another open-throttled melody that circles like the seasons. And then those weirdy persistent plants continue to pop up in a garden, as ‘Drifting’ sings with the beauty of a summer’s last acoustic thought.  

Odd, ‘Drifting’ is (almost!) a nod toward Andy Partridge and his always clever XTC rural sound of their brilliant Skylarking album.

The same is true for the folk field psych-rock of ‘Honey’. The song chimes well with any autumnal reflective soundtrack, as the tune chases a folk-pop millstone grinded long-ago horizon. This music flows into the ingredients of any “Summer’s” mystical “Cauldron”. And by the way, it’s a really nice tune.

Then, ‘Masquerade’ is yet another folk-strummed song that’s punctuated with huge emotion and a big choral halo. Nice, again!

And in the final grooves, ‘Perfect Sense’ is a vocal-acoustic guitar delight. This is an honest reflection that sings with a soul that’s freed of purgatory and drops its folk song egg into any universal dust, “where”, to quote my friend, Kilda Defnut, once again, “weird things pop up that I didn’t even plant”. And, thankfully, those unexpected folk-rooted sprouts are always, on any given sunny and very musical day, really easy to love.

Bill Golembeski

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