On the stroke of midnight on Halloween, east London’s Philip Morgan Lewis released via Moonalizer Records, ‘Grief Harbour‘, an album of blues-tinged alternative rock songs that pulse with a natural blues rhythm. The follow up from last years ‘Karma Comedown‘ EP.
Forging a backbone of roots blues and alternative rock guitar, with a natural nack for a stomping rhythm, ‘Grief Harbour’ tugs on the heartstrings and pulls them close, whilst providing burning alternative rock anthems and at times broken down folk intimacy.
Between the heavy hitting rock tunes of ‘Six Foot Tamberine‘, ‘Seven Deadly‘ and ‘Sinner‘ you are hit with the broken down emotional roller coaster of ‘Swing By Your House‘, a Jack White style heart breaker played on piano, moulding the album into a multi-faced beast. ‘Don’t Care If You Don’t Mind‘ recalls an introspective Dylan-esque folk number, which offers again something different and shows Philip doesn’t just have one string to his songwriting bow, quite the opposite.
At the heart of the LP lies a reflective soul soaked in modern day blues, happy to dwell in the darker corners of alternative rock, yet every inch an uplifting rhythmic beast. Philip’s vocals snake around ‘Grief Harbour’, he manages to bite with all the lyrical tenacity and with the natural songwriting finesse, as is needed for a hugely cinematic and fast-punching rock record. Lyrical themes of love, grief and pain bind acceptance as the album takes turns into dark alleys, vast fields of memory before once again finding the light.
By Karl Johnson