Lonely Galaxy – EP2 (Transparent) 06/12/2010

December 7, 2010 by  

Lonely Galaxy is the solo project of London’s Harry Granger-Howell, who has been creating gloomy slowcore ballads ever since the break up of his former band Video Nasties. After signing with the uber-trendy Transparent Recordings – home to artists such as Washed Out, Perfume Genius, and Yuck who have all made a great impact on to the independent scene this year – Lonely Galaxy has released “EP 2”, which contains four well crafted songs that have further improved on the previous release of last summers “EP 1”.

Firstly, an organ drone backs a heartbroken vocal on “Bible Truth Depot”, along with some gentle strings and delicately plucked reverb guitar. By this point it is already becoming quite clear that just like his previous EP, Howell is once again in a forlorn and glum mood. Thankfully though it’s not all doom and gloom, as the following track “Nutts”, with its trembling guitar and stylish piano chords, begins to paint a slightly more hopeful picture that slowly takes away the feelings of hurt and longing. The chorus contains a more optimistic vocal and there is also a joyful sing-a-long bridge section that shows all hope is not lost.

“Heavy” is a sublime instrumental piece which compliments Howell’s expert musicianship as it combines tender piano lines with atmospheric guitars and Sigur Rós-esque glockenspiel accompaniments – resulting in a beautifully tranquil soundscape. The EP finishes on “Modern Romance”, a lovelorn ballad where Howell’s current bleak outlook on relationships contains large amounts of melancholy through some fragile piano and a chorus lyric of “I don’t ever wanna find another lover / She said ‘I don’t want that’ / If I could I’d take it back but frankly I’d prefer a heart attack”. Yet there is also a glimmer of hope towards the end of the song thanks to a coda full of rich string arrangements and crescendo guitar.

There is no doubt that this year has produced yet another exceptional solo artist in Lonely Galaxy. What sets him apart from most solo projects this year is that this record is expertly produced, and the backing of strings and piano creates a very plush and elegant sound which is perfect for Howell’s style of song writing. Hopefully on his debut LP next year he will provide even more musical gems as found on this EP.

[rating:4]


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