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JOHN MURRY

John Murry

The Stars Are God's Bullet Holes

    John Murry’s third album is starlit and wondrous, like being wrapped in the softest black velvet. It’s an album of startling imagery and insinuating melodies, of cold moonlight and searing heat. It’s a record that penetrates to the very heart of you, searing with its burning honesty, its unsparing intimacy and its twisted beauty.

    ‘The Stars Are God’s Bullet Holes’ is not an album for an ordinary world, because it’s not an ordinary album. It’s an album to dive deep into and submerge yourself in, and to emerge from aware that this world is a remarkable place, and that John Murry is a remarkable artist.

    STAFF COMMENTS

    Barry says: There's a palpable sense of rock and roll groove on this one from Murry, with the fuzzy bass and power-chord riffs being wonderfully offset with surprisingly light vocal accompaniments from the backing singers. Dynamically intricate but surprisingly simple audio constructions perfectly displaying Murry's unmatched songcraft.

    TRACK LISTING

    1. Oscar Wilde (Came Here To Make Fun Of You)
    2. Perfume & Decay
    3. The Stars Are God's Bullet Holes
    4. Di Kreutser Sonata
    5. I Refuse To Believe (You Could Love Me)
    6. Ones + Zeros
    7. Time & A Rifle
    8. Ordinary World
    9. 1(1)1
    10. Yer Little Black Book

    John Murry

    A Short Piece Of Decay

      John Murry was adopted at birth into the family of William Faulkner. Some have speculated that the Faulkner blood might also run in his veins, but that should be left for a Southern Gothic novel yet to be written (or perhaps re-written)..Raised in Tupelo, Mississippi, in the shadow of Elvis, his undiagnosed autism led to troubles at an early age which led to prescribed medication, which led to unprescribed medication which led to being institutionalised for addiction and mental health issues at a too young age. Eventually, discarded onto the streets of Memphis, he found music, which became the one constant positive force in his life. Memphis led to San Francisco and San Francisco led to heroin and heroin led to a near fatal overdose on the corner of 16th and Mission, so harrowingly memorialised in his song Little Coloured Balloons.

      Music again came to his rescue and led him to Tim Mooney (American Music Club) and the group of musicians that helped create his 2012 masterpiece "The Graceless Age". The album was hailed by MOJO magazine and received a 5 out of 5 rating, UNCUT called it a "masterpiece", both magazines included it in their Top 10 albums of the year; American Songwriter put it in their Top 5 of the year and The Guardian included it in their best of the year as well. The accolades rolled in and John toured the world. He entranced and devastated audiences with his raw, unfiltered live performances, and it looked like his trajectory was set, that music had won and would have the final word. And then Tim Mooney, John’s mentor, his beacon, his bedrock, died suddenly and unexpectedly… and John’s world fell back in to chaos.

      Over the next few years, John would lose the footing that he had struggled so hard to establish. He would lose his wife, his daughter, temporarily his freedom and ultimately his country. Somewhere along this volatile journey, John crossed paths with Michael Timmins of Cowboy Junkies . John had opened for the band at a show in Glasgow and Michael watched side-stage transfixed by John’s performance. Over the next few years the two of them kept in touch, they talked about the music business, politics, books, but most of all they talked about music. And they talked about making an album together.

      Eventually John completed his descent and landed in Kilkenny, Ireland where he found some solid ground as part of a welcoming arts community. Michael then convinced him to travel to his Toronto studio where Michael put a band together consisting of brother Peter Timmins (Cowboy Junkies) on drums and Josh Finlayson (Skydiggers, Gord Downie, Lee Harvey Osmond) on bass. John brought along Cait O’Riordan (The Pogues, Elvis Costello) whom he had met in Ireland and who wanted to be a part of John’s journey. The five of them put aside five days to record all bedtracks and overdubs, with the brief that they would let the songs dictate where the journey took them, spontaneity was the order of the week. Michael Timmins describes the sessions, "I felt that it was important that John got out of his own way and that we set up a situation where he would just play and sing and the rest of us would just react, no second guessing, just react and capture the moment. It was a very inspired and inspiring week of playing and recording. Very intense. And I think we captured the raw essence of John’s writing and playing".

      A Short History Of Decay is an intensely personal document of an artist’s fall from grace. It contains all the tragic elements of that unwritten Southern Gothic novel: the revelations of a man coming to terms with the personal shortcomings, the flaws and the perverse twists of fate that led him to the end of one journey and the beginning of another.

      STAFF COMMENTS

      Barry says: Murry has always been known for his true life confessionals, and this outing is no different. Hard hitting rocking Americana anthems like 'Defacing Sunday Bulletins' and 'Under A Darker Moon' sit confortably alongside minimal acoustic odes like 'Wrong Man', or driven guitars and melancholic harmonies of 'Come Five & Twenty'. Lovely stuff all-round.

      TRACK LISTING

      1. Silver Or Lead
      2. Under A Darker Moon
      3. Wrong Man
      4. Defacing Sunday Bulletins
      5. When God Walks In
      6. Come Five & Twenty
      7. One Day (You’ll Die)
      8. Countess Lola’s Blues (All In This Together)
      9. Miss Magdalene
      10. What Jail Is Like


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