(EM) is the solo moniker of recording artist Eddie Mead. Building on his experiences playing in several local bands of various styles and volumes (such as Mercer, Backer, and Wisher), he’s assumed full creative control and released his first four proper solo albums throughout 2020. His latest, ‘dumbo’, synthesizes his familiar heavy guitar riffs with more fluid, psychedelic textures and arrangements.

In writing music, Eddie finds his main emotional outlet. Lyrically, he examines isolation, nostalgia, dreams, memories, mental illness, substance abuse, addiction, and the struggles of recovery. His words are sometimes stream of consciousness, or can be influenced by the works of Kurt Vonnegut, T.S. Eliot, and Beat Generation authors.

Musically, (EM) blends together a strange hybrid of lo-fi garage rock/shoegaze-sludge-pop with elements of folk and some psychedelia. Amongst his many influences are Bob Dylan, Guided By Voices, Wipers, Television, Nick Drake, Dinosaur Jr., Joni Mitchell, My Bloody Valentine, Destroyer, Wire, Big Thief, Pavement, Frankie Cosmos, Mission of Burma, Slowdive, darn it., The Replacements, Angel Olsen, Big Star, Sonic Youth, DIIV, The Cure, Technicolor Teeth, Purple Mountains, Tenement, Mannequin Pussy, The Exploding Hearts, Chinese Telephones, and much more.

This album is impossible not to listen to from beginning to end, the hooks are strong and grip you even when you think you have escaped them. The lyrics in each single capture your attention within seconds and I feel any listener will be able to relate to them. The combination of sounds, instrumentals and vocals work so well together on this incredible album, it has something for everyone to enjoy.

It was hard for me to pick my favourite track from this album as each track has its own anthemic sound which makes it special. If I really had to pick one that has managed to stand out a little more from the other tracks it would be ‘massive gamble’, this single is full of energy and lyrics that make you stop and listen to every word, I found myself hooked within seconds and tapping along with the song.

This album was something completely different to what I usually enjoy listening to, but I could not help but love what I was hearing. It’s safe to say I’m a fan and look forward to hearing more music from Eddie in the future.

Great job!

9/10

By Ollie Cooper

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