ep review ~ mere moths ~ 'you grew up'

The journey of Patrick Wright from guitar swinging, indie rocker, to the delicate and soulful acoustic tinged folk artists that he has became in recent times has been a long and intriguing process. Starting life as a promising indie four piece, 'Mere Moths' immediately grabbed the attention of the local music scene through their acclaimed 'Water Of The Land' EP. You felt the only thing that would hold the band back was their age, as despite the technical complexity of their compositions and Wrights clever and mature lyrical prowess, they were only young teenagers. Wright himself has admitted in interviews that he was only 'about 14 or 15' when he wrote the songs that would shine the first spotlight onto Mere Moths and their rock filled potential. Sadly, life got in the way and gradually the band began to dissolve until only Patrick was left. Deciding the keep the name that had already gained the respect of his musical contemporaries, 'Mere Moths' began life as a solo project. Nearly two years since Wright took on the mantle as a solo artist, Mere Moths much anticipated follow up EP 'You Grew Up' has finally been released and it's fair to say that expectations have been inevitably high. Taylor Johnson had a first listen...
Opening with the beautifully ethereal title track, 'You Grew Up' immediately sets the tone for the EP through a series of blues influenced acoustic guitar riffs. It's almost a gentle reminder to anyone expecting the spunky, Jake Bugg styled rock and roll of 'Water Of The Land' that the man behind the guitar has matured and with him too, has the content and delivery of his brilliantly crafted melodies. With a raspy vocal tone and atmospheric backing, you'd be forgiven for thinking you were listening to an unreleased Fleet Foxes track. Haunting and soothing, 'You Grew Up' is a superb introduction to Mere Moths new found maturity.
'Fight Me' opens with a gently strummed acoustic guitar, gently balanced with a subtle piano floating into the heavier interludes. This song has a distinct Paul Weller element, brilliantly placed classical guitar riffs elevating the track to it's powerful and emotive peaks. A compelling mix.
Penultimate track 'My Fear' highlights Wrights gripping melancholy undertones. Opening with an almost Smiths styled classical guitar, this song lays bare Mere Moths assured and confident sound, with the powerful refrain of 'I don't believe in Jesus, as he didn't save me' striking a particularly potent nerve. Could benefit with a classical overdub on any future recordings to add a bittersweet element to proceedings, but as an EP track 'My Fear' never threatens to let the quality of the first two tracks falter
Finally 'Reassurance' see's Mere Moths return briefly to their rockier roots, a full band set allowing Wright the opportunity to crank up both the volume and passion, as a distorted electric guitar elevates their sound to new heights. Again, adding to the EP's wonderful elective nature, Mere Moths versatility see's 'Reassurance' breaking into Bruce Springsteen territory. Everything from the flowing build up, to the rough, strong delivery echos the American folk rock hero and the fact that this is the only track from the EP with such credentials is a credit to Wright and his consistently developing songwriting. 
Will Mere Moths continue to produce the folk tinged rock of the final track of this well crafted and diverse EP, or will we see more of the sensitive, singer song-writer styled acoustic ballads of the opening tracks? Only time will tell. In the meantime 'You Grew Up' is a thoroughly enjoyable bridge to cross, both for the older fans of Wrights indie roots and new fans intrigued by his new found role as a solo artist. 
Mere Moths has grown up and with him, has his sound.

Taylor Johnson.
If You Like... Jake Bugg | Paul Weller | Fleet Foxes ~ You'll love Mere Moths

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