Ben Morgan-Brown – Cold Rooms EP
|Ben Morgan-Brown - Cold Rooms EP|
Release Date: Out Now
There is nothing instantly remarkable about Ben Morgan-Brown. He’s a guy from Exeter with a guitar and a voice – ten a penny from my experience of writing this blog. There’s no obvious back story or tragedy to hook in to and he doesn’t have any crazy outfits or eccentric facial hair. No, Ben Morgan-Brown takes to the stage with no fanfare or lightshow but as the opening plucked notes of title track ‘Cold Rooms’ seep in to your ears it all makes sense. This is a frosty, still, English winter of an opening as the guitar strings crackle like ice under foot while each breathy word sung by Morgan-Brown is accompanied by a puff of condensation escaping in to the cold morning air. ‘I See That You’ finds our unassuming hero in more chirpy form as if the morning’s sunlight is starting to melt the chill and warm the air with the rippled and rolling guitar notes. This is a John Williams-esque tune (purely instrumental, by the way) to get back in to bed with a cup of tea to and snuggle down under the covers with your loved one or at least a beloved pet.
The versatility of tone that Morgan-Brown can wring out of a guitar is nothing short of masterful and never is that more in evidence than on ‘No More Fooling’. The dark, nervous and edgy acoustic notes are matched by a vocal that is quietly determined as resolutions are laid down for anyone willing to listen. The warmth is back on ‘Been Away So’ which has a real kitchen-sink drama feel to it and a real every day vibe that is easy to get along with. On ‘Sunken Treasure’ Morgan-Brown is in story telling mode as he gently slides from fret to fret whilst, I imagine, looking out to sea or across rolling hills – this is not an urban song. The EP closes up with ‘Borrowed Tones’ which is possibly the most accomplished track on this collection with almost classically performed guitar ripples and the kind of controlled vocal that speaks of hours of practice and craftsmanship. And off he goes again, in to the night with a guitar slung over his shoulder and his collar up around his neck against the cold night air. Ben Morgan-Brown is never going to fill stadiums with his music but if you’re lucky enough to encounter him performing one evening then I’m pretty sure he’ll fill up your heart and that’s more than enough for me.
More information: https://www.facebook.com/benmorganbrownmusic
17th January – Brewery Tap, Exeter
22nd January – Bread & Roses, Plymouth
2nd February – Woodburner Session @ Lusty Glaze, Newquay
7th February – ELR Acoustic Showcase @ the Phoenix, Exeter
11th February – Village Hall, Nunney
24th February – The Drewe Arms, Drewsteignton