ALBUM REVIEW: Gigi’s Recovery – The Murder Capital

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When sitting down to write their second album, Dublin based post-punk band THE MURDER CAPITAL knew one thing: it had to sound completely different to their debut. After reaching unexpected success with their first record, there were only a few ways the next one could go, and from just the beginning of Gigi’s Recovery, it’s clear they’re going in a different direction. Navigating their relationship as a band, since they had only known each other for nine months, and the success of When I Have Fears, THE MURDER CAPITAL knew how their second record Gigi’s Recovery would feel before it was even written, and as a concept album it takes us through the journey of questioning, understanding, and eventually recovery. Clearly, the only way for this band is forward, and this album is a deep-dive into every kind of emotion.

Existence, the introduction, is poetic and tense, with James McGovern’s vocals repeating “existence fading” with a tone that gets increasingly louder in a manner that feels all-consuming. Seamlessly transitioning into Crying, we are hit with raw emotion, setting the tone for the album. A trippy soundscape pulls us in, with the moody vocals at the forefront, and the increasingly desperate bridge creates a memorable opener.

Return My Head, with honest lyrics and a painful chorus, is extremely catchy, if a little heartbreaking. While the style of this song in particular is addictive, it’s one of the only tracks that are this upbeat, but variation is always a good thing. The next few tracks prove that Gigi’s Recovery is only going to keep getting more vulnerable, and with a lot of existential questions, the lyrics manage to stay hopeful, at least for the most part. Bringing in an extra dimension with synths and futuristic sounds, it’s clear this album has more of an art-punk style, which allows the vocals and lyrics to take precedence.

The Lie Becomes The Self is a track that really embodies everything the album seems to be, with McGovern’s strong vocals at the forefront, and painfully honest lyrics. It seems to go through phases of building up and dropping off, creating a hypnotising sound and completely redefining the typical structure of a song. A Thousand Lives is another highlight, and the drums are integral for driving it through. Passionately relatable lyrics tell the story of insecurity and love, making for another beautifully poetic song.

The best song on the album comes later, in the form of Only Good Things. As well as being the leading single, it is an upbeat love song, with raw, powerful imagery and infectious positivity. Closing the album is Exist, coming completely full circle with a lyric change to “existence changing”. Feeling slightly helpless but still hopeful, it’s a final note, accepting uncertainty.

While it might take a few listens to fully appreciate the details and meanings, Gigi’s Recovery is a deeply personal but beautiful album. Feeling more experimental than their debut, this is a dark but calm record, and it feels like the natural progression for the band. Complete focus is needed, with the risk of a few songs dropping off, but when attention is paid to each part of each song, it’s easy to see the beauty in each one. While it’s definitely a different direction, THE MURDER CAPITAL have proven once again they cannot be underestimated.

Rating: 8/10

Gigi's Recovery - The Murder Capital

Gigi’s Recovery is out now via Human Season.

Like THE MURDER CAPITAL on Facebook.

The post ALBUM REVIEW: Gigi’s Recovery – The Murder Capital appeared first on Distorted Sound Magazine.

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