News

PREMIERE: Mcrobin lulls you with the tender serenade In

The worst part about The Civil Wars‘ current estrangement is that they have a left a large hole in the market for easily accessible country/ folk. The uninitiated may believe that these genres are ostensibly the same thing, they are two different beasts entirely and the ability to wield both is no simple task.

That duo did it ridiculously well, even punk heads like yours truly couldn’t resist the charms of their storytelling. But today dear Happy people, there’s a hope that someone can step up to take on that empty mantle. That someone is Mcrobin.

Mcrobin premi

Let yourself go as Mcrobin lulls you with the tender serenade In. A triumph of alternative folk, his songwriting is earnest and the production is stellar.

Known to his mother as James McGuffie (or most likely just James, maybe Jimmy, but let’s not be presumptuous), Mcrobin is an alternative folk singer hailing from Mt Buffalo in North East Victoria. His name is actually taken from the name of his family’s farm which is pretty bloody cute. In the name alone there is a sense of intimacy to his persona, but we’ll get to that part later.

Since moving to Melbourne James has written for a handful of different bands and venturing out on his own as Mcrobin since 2013. His first single Waiting For The Rain released last year placed Mcrobin as a finalist in the International Songwriting Competition and won him the Darebin Music Feast Songwriters’ Award. Not too shabby eh?

Those awards aren’t just for bragging rights either. The man knows how to pen a song, one listen of his new single In is bound to have you weeping in awe of its beauty. Big call to make, I know, but it’s a track you can tell has been painstakingly put together and the results is indicative of the effort.

One may argue that In comes across as too polished but there are enough elements at play within the song to keep it warm and organic. Let’s start with that idea of intimacy and familiarity with his persona mentioned earlier. The years Mcrobin spent as a songwriter haven’t gone to waste, the young man has an unmeasured ability to spin stories that are transparent yet maintain a sense of intrigue.

I don’t believe in your smile / I believe in your frown” speaks so well to the nature of a deep relationship, romantic or platonic, and feeling love from a person who may otherwise be unhappy with their self. As James says of InLyrically, In is a tribute to the people who manage to still bring warmth and happiness to a relationship or circumstance despite the cold and bitterness they are feeling within themselves“.

Recorded in Mcrobin’s home studio with the help of co-producer Jim Rindfleish and Matt Voigt (who’s worked with Oh Mercy and Twerps) the track sounds fantastic. There are a lot of instruments in play; from the plucked nylon strings to the vintage synths, yet the space never feels too stuffy. In swells and recedes like the changing evening tide. And that voice, swoon! It comes across like a gentle summer’s breeze, the layered vocals in the bridge a total gem.

In will be featured on Mcrobin’s upcoming EP Fault Lines to be released later this year. He’s playing a show tonight at The Wesley Anne as part of Songwriters In The Round, and will be launching his EP on July 12 at The Evelyn as part of Leaps and Bounds Festival.